A scary but safe Halloween, urges Lincolnshire Trading Standards

TV presenter Claudia Winkleman whose eight-year-old daughter was badly burned when her witch's costume caught fire last year.  Photo by  PA Photo/BBC/Love Productions.
TV presenter Claudia Winkleman whose eight-year-old daughter was badly burned when her witch's costume caught fire last year. Photo by PA Photo/BBC/Love Productions.
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Fire and trading standards officers in South Holland and across Lincolnshire are playing their part in making Halloween a safe one.

Tests on fancy dress costumes, bought from stores across the county, have been carried out jointly by Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue and Lincolnshire Trading Standards.

I’d like parents on Halloween just to think about what they’re going to put on their kids because I didn’t and it cost us.

Claudia Winkleman

The results have varied from one costume not catching fire at all to others that were engulfed in flames and one which was completely destroyed.

Alexandra Connell, senior trading standards officer at Lincolnshire County Council, said: “Many parents aren’t aware that fancy dress costumes are classed as toys which means they can be tested to a lower flammability standard than other types of children’s clothing such as nightwear.

“Parents should make sure that their children avoid flames, particularly when they are wearing their fancy dress costume, and know what to do should anything happen.

The safety campaign comes after TV presenter Claudia Winkleman’s daughter was severely burned after her Halloween outfit caught fire last year.

In a BBC TV interview, Claudia said: “I’d like parents on Halloween to think about what they’re going to put on their kids because I didn’t and it cost us.

“It’s not a toy like a broomstick because they wear a costume next to their bare skin.”

Steve Screaton, deputy community safety manager at Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue, said: “Fancy dress costumes often have trailing adornments such as capes, wings and tassels which can catch fire if they come too close to a flame.

“Please supervise your children at all times and keep them away from lanterns, candles and tea-lights in pumpkins.

“We don’t want to stop people enjoying Halloween, but we do want them to celebrate safely as there is nothing more terrifying than having a fire at home or seeing your clothes catch fire.