30th October 2023

Derby TS stops Halloween scares

Five potentially dangerous Halloween costumes have been removed from sale.


By JTS Staff
Journal of Trading Standards' in-house team
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I would urge anyone to really consider whether the money saved buying a cheap costumer is worth the risk to their safety or that of the children

The team at Derby City Council Trading Standards have been working to ensure Halloween costumes do not give local residents the wrong kind of scare this year.

A baby’s pumpkin costume failed safety tests

With the cost-of-living crisis pushing many parents online in search of bargain Halloween costumes, the Derby Trading Standards team were concerned that some products available may not meet safety requirements. They carried out five test purchases of items bought from independent sellers on Amazon — and all of the products failed to meet the requirements of the Toys (Safety) Regulations 2011 (Consumer Protection Act 1987) or the General Product Safety Regulations 2005.

One product, a witch costume, presented a serious risk of entrapment and failed flammability tests, while a baby’s pumpkin outfit from the same seller carried serious chemical and asphyxiation risks.

Another two witch costumes both presented a serious risk of choking, alongside entrapment, asphyxiation and strangulation risks. One also failed flammability testing, with flames spreading faster than 30mm per second.

The final product to be tested — a vampire costume — also failed as it presented a serious risk of entrapment and was missing required documentation and markings.

Councillor Shiraz Khan, Derby City Council Cabinet Member for Regulatory Services, said: “I’m incredibly proud of our Trading Standards team for their work leading to these recalls, which not only keep Derby residents safe, but everyone shopping for costumes online.

“We’ve all heard stories about accidents involving unsafe Halloween costumes and I would urge anyone to really consider whether the money saved buying a cheap costumer is worth the risk to their safety or that of the children who will wear them.

“Not everything for sale online is dangerous, but shoppers should always check the sellers’ details and only buy from sellers you trust.”

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