Electrical ignorance putting lives at risk

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Many Scots would ignore a burning smell coming from a plug or socket

IGNORANCE of the dangers of electricity is putting Scottish lives at risk, new research claims.

At least one person in the UK dies each week from its everyday use, while 350,000 people are seriously injured annually.

Yet those surveyed in Scotland were as concerned about having an electrical accident as they were of being in a plane crash, or getting struck by lightning.

In the past year, 19% of Scottish adults have knowingly used faulty plugs or sockets; despite the fact this can result in a fatal or serious injury.

Other electrical ‘confessions’ saw  3% admitting to repairing an appliance while it is still plugged in. 2% ignoring burning smells coming from an appliance or socket and  6% trailing cables near hot surfaces or cookers.

Seventy percent of people had never heard of a device called a Residual Current Device (RCD), a life-saving device which prevents you from getting a fatal electric shock if you touch something live, such as a bare wire.

The Electrical Safety Council (ESC) has today (Tues) launched a new smartphone app to help Scots make their home safe.

Director General of the ESC, Phil Buckle, said: “Electricity has become vital to our lives since the formation of the National Grid, 76 years ago. Yet even though we are using more electrical products than ever before, there is a worrying gap between the public’s perception of electrical danger and the reality, with people making simple yet potentially fatal errors that can be easily prevented. “

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