Dangerous Counterfeit Lighters on sale
Friday 21st September 2007
Stirling Council and Clackmannanshire Council's joint Trading Standards Service is warning smokers to check their lighters to make sure that they have not bought a dangerous fake.
Trading Standards is warning that counterfeit lighters have been circulating widely throughout the UK and recent test purchases in the Stirling and Clackmannanshire areas has resulted in several thousand counterfeit lighters being seized.
According to Trading Standards Officer Brian Wilson "Although the lighters are being sold for the same price as genuine lighters it is easy for consumers to identify the fakes when they know what to look for. The counterfeit lighters found locally looked like "Clipper" lighters. But just by looking at the lighter consumers can tell if it is genuine or not. Genuine lighters have a plastic ridge inside the top on either side of the striker, counterfeit lighters don't.
"Also if consumers gently pull out the striker mechanism the counterfeit plastic piece is only about an inch (2.5cm) long while the genuine plastic piece is about an inch and a half (4cm) long and has a removable screw at the bottom to enable a consumer to replace the flint. As with the genuine lighters the counterfeit lighters are available in a number of colours.
The sale of counterfeit lighters, which are produced in China, is a lucrative business for organised criminals in the UK.
Unfortunately the counterfeit lighters are not produced to the same standards as the genuine product, the flame of the counterfeit lighters is longer and the counterfeits are not refillable and may leak.
Trading Standards is urging anyone with information on where they are being sold to contact them.
Stirling Council Trading Standards Service can be contacted Monday to Friday 09:00 to 17:00 at Municipal Buildings, 8-10 Corn Exchange Road, Stirling, FK8 2HU, by telephoning 0845 277 7000, or by emailing email@example.com