The fire service has issued a warning about using electric heaters in a bit to cut down on energy bills.

As part of Electrical Fire Safety week from Monday, December 4 to Sunday, December 10, Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service (HWFRS) is raising awareness about electrical failures.

HWFRS is particularly warning against buying online and choosing cheap tech from faulty fridges and irons left unattended to bad plugs and wiring which cause about 4,000 fires in the home each year.

Counterfeit electrical products also remain a common problem with people urged to consider more than just the price when choosing a portable heater for the winter.

Head of Prevention at HWFRS, Emma Roberts, said: “Electrical equipment is an inescapable part of all our lives from essentials like heating and lights to luxuries like entertainment systems or beauty products.

“Numerous accidental fires begin with an electrical appliance, so it’s really important to be sure that your electrics are in top-notch condition and used properly.

“This year I’d urge people not to go for low-cost portable heaters and put price above safety.

The rising costs make small and inexpensive space heaters look like a practical and efficient way to heat a room with prices starting from as little as £10, but saving a few pounds on an unsuitable appliance could prove to be very costly.

The Electrical Safety First charity also knows people are reluctant to register products as people do not know how to do it, fail to realise the importance of registration and do not want to hand over their personal data in case it is used for marketing purposes.

Ms Roberts added: “If you’re buying online make sure you buy from a trusted retailer either direct from the manufacturer’s website or a well-known high street name. That way if something goes wrong you can return the product for repair or a refund.

“Shoppers can also check a product’s status at Electrical Safety First’s free ‘Check it Out’ site, identifying third party sellers on popular online retailers and helping make an informed buying decision.

“Remember if a bargain seems too good to be true, it most probably is.”

HWFRS has since issued a list of top tips to stay safe including not to overload plug sockets, check for worn and frayed wires, unplug the appliances, never leave portable heaters unattended and do not leave them on whilst sleeping.

To register an appliance visit or for more information visit