Is Your Dressing Gown A Fire Hazard?November 10, 2016
Many of us love to cosy up on the sofa in a dressing gown after a hard day’s work as the nights draw in.
But a warning has been issued that such nightwear could present a serious safety hazard this winter – especially if there are also candles around the home.
Wearers are being warned to stay well clear of naked flames after it emerged the popular garments could be made from highly flammable material.
Although the law states that children’s nightwear has to meet flammability regulations, adult nightgowns can be made from any material, as long as they are clearly labelled “keep away from fire”.
Fabric such as terry towelling are highly flammable and are regularly used in the manufacture of dressing gowns.
Rebecca Montague, a personal injury specialist based at Macks’ Redcar office, believes the issue should be addressed urgently.
“I’m very alarmed to discover that adult dressing gowns aren’t subject to the same rigorous safety rules as children’s nightwear,” she said.
“Like many people, I spend a great deal of time in my dressing gown and I didn’t realise they could be so dangerous.
“Lots of people like to get out of our work clothes and put on a dressing gown on when we’re relaxing at home.
“The current fashion for using scented candles around the home creates a potentially dangerous situation that many people could be completely unaware of, just as I was.”
In recent years the UK has become Europe’s biggest market for scented candles, with annual sales fast approaching £100m.
According to recent newspaper reports, there have been at least five deaths or serious injuries caused by in dressing gown fires in the last ten years, although there is no official record.
Home Office figures for 2014/2015 show there were a total of 2,309 clothing-related fires.
The Chief Fire Officers Association recently highlighted the dangers caused by fancy dress costumes, especially at Halloween.
The organisation would like to see such clothing categorised as children’s nightwear. They currently come under the heading of toys, mean they can still be made from flammable materials.