Video: Sussex children’s Hallowe’en costumes fire tested

Children’s Hallowe’en costumes have been set fire to by firefighters and trading standards officers in a bid to find out which retailers are selling safe products.

Friday, 16th October 2015, 11:59 am

Count Dracula, pumpkin, bat, cat and witch cosutumes were put through their paces today (October 16) at Worthing Fire Station by firefighter Liberato Venditto, to check they comply with the law and do not catch fire easily and spread too rapidly when set alight.

While some of the costumes, which were bought from shops in West Sussex were thought to comply with fire safety standards, some costumes will be sent off for formal testing.

Peter Aston, Trading Standards manager, said: “The key message is really keep your children away from a naked flame.


“The results of testing will not be known until nearer the end of October but we do expect the safety of these items to have significantly improved. If not we will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action.”

Howver he said the costumes were not ‘fire proof’.

The team found the shirt and gloves on a County Dracula style costume were ‘concerning’, finding different fabrics changed the rate of fire spreading.

Firefighters said burned fabric would be likely to stick to the skin.

A witch costume was tested on a dummy. The netting on the costume burned slowly but the lining of the costume was

Last year, the same testing reveal a faulty batch which had been produced in China.

Parents and carers are being advised to let their kids be ‘scary but safe’ with the spooky Hallowe’en costumes they wear this year.

Experts say costumes should only be bought from reputable sources, particularly when buying on-line, and that consumers should check that the product bears a CE mark.

If buyers find any children’s costumes that don’t have a CE mark, they can let Trading Standard know by using the online reporting form at or calling the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.

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