Essex Fire Service release Halloween dangers video

A crew from March attended a car fire late last night

A crew from March attended a car fire late last night - Credit: Archant

Essex County Fire and Rescue Service has released a video about the dangers of wearing fancy dress costumes near naked flames.

The footage, released in time for Halloween, shows a series of outfits becoming engulfed in fire, some just seconds after being lit.

Divisional Officer, Neil Fenwick, said: “The results of our tests were truly terrifying. These costumes caught light very easily, burned quickly and if a child had been wearing one when it caught light they could easily have been killed.”

Instead, the Service recommends using LED lights in place of candles and checking that costumes are labelled as flame-resistant.

Parents have also been warned about potentially flammable homemade outfits, particularly the temptation to use bin liners for capes.

Mr Fenwick added: “Our test showed just how combustible these children’s costumes can be so our advice is avoid naked flames at all costs.”

Some consequences can even be life-changing, with some materials burning into the skin.

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“These costumes are made from synthetic materials so as well as burning they will melt and stick to the skin causing horrific burns,” he continued.

In fact, the Service has teamed up with the Chief Fire Officer’s Association to campaign for fancy dress costumes to have the same safety standards as children’s nightclothes.

If clothing does catch fire though, there are three steps to remember.

Mr Fenwick said: “If someone’s clothes catch light they should stop, drop and roll. The correct procedure is to drop to the floor immediately and roll around to smother the flames.”

“Under no circumstances should these costumes be worn on fireworks night. They are simply not safe to be around fires and fireworks.”