Fire chiefs are urging people to steer clear of cheap chargers following a house fire in Sheffield which claimed five lives.
The warning came after the charity Electrical Safety First commissioned tests looking at the safety of chargers bought online.
It found that half had been wired using ‘sub-standard components’ and none met UK safety requirements.
Last month fire investigators in Sheffield established a faulty charging device was the most ‘probable cause’ of a blaze on Wake Road, Nether Edge, which killed three generations of the same family.
Shabina Begum, aged 53, her daughter Anum Parwaiz, and her three grandchildren Adyan, Amaan and baby Minahil perished.
Kevin Ronan, head of community safety for South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, said the charger was in an area of the family living room where there were a number of electrical devices.
“A lot of cheap, unbranded chargers are imported, made with cheap components, and not designed for a specific brand of device,” he said.
“They may charge items at a greater speed than they are meant to be charged, they may overheat - there are a number of things which can go wrong.”
He said electrical items should also be turned off at night.
“If anything happens and you are asleep there is less you will be able to do about it,” he added.