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Parents urged to heed Halloween costume warnings

23 October 2018

Parents across the Derry City and Strabane District Council area are being encouraged to check the relevant advice before they purchase Halloween costumes to ensure they are fully safety compliant and from a recognised retailer.

Council’s Environmental Health team have issued the warning this week ahead of the annual Halloween festivities, in order to raise awareness and reduce the risks which costumes and accessories can pose for children.

Head of Health and Community Well-Being with Derry City and Strabane District Council, Seamus Donaghy, urged parents to use read instructions carefully, only use valid retailers and to always keep children away from naked flames.

“We would urge parents and guardians across the Council area to always check the labelling and only buy products which meet the relevant safety requirements,” he stressed. “Buying costumes or face-masks intended for children which do not meet the European safety standard EN71- part 2 with respect to fire resistance, can have tragic results.

“We also want to remind them that costumes should only be used in a safe environment. We would encourage parents to especially take care when using candles as naked flames can pose a serious risk. Do not carry pumpkins with candles inside, consider using battery-powered candles and lights and make sure that children are always supervised by an adult.

“This year’s Halloween programme is packed full of family friendly activities for all ages, and we want everyone to have a safe and a very enjoyable celebration.”

Businesses who are supplying Hallowe’en and children’s dress up costumes and accessories, are reminded that the onus is on them to take appropriate steps to ensure they are of the necessary quality and are compliant.

Anyone who encounters costumes intended for use by children that does not carry the necessary labelling and important CE safety mark, is encouraged to contact the Council’s Environmental Health Service. 

For further information and advice please contact Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Environmental Health Service on 028 7125 3253 or email [email protected]