Undercover Trading Standards officers in Scotland carried out a “blitz” on vape stores – to see if they were enforcing the new rules regarding the sale of vape devices and liquid for electronic cigarettes.
The TPD dictates that no item can be sold to people under 18 years old, stores should have an age verification policy, and no liquid should be over 20mg in nicotine strength (otherwise referred to as 20%).
North Ayrshire Trading Standards officers seized over 200 packs of illegal goods, including devices and liquids, worth a total of £2,800. All of the liquids were confiscated as they were over 20mg strength – or, as the Daily Record said: “Hundreds of super-strength e-cigarette liquids were seized by Trading Standards”.
A representative said that officials had been carrying out an “education phase” but that came to an end on 1st October. After this point, traders had been informed, the council intended to prosecute anyone not complying. The spokesperson said: “Our Trading Standards team were disappointed to find that most retailers were still not following the legislation introduced earlier this year. The legislation exists for a reason – to make the sale of e-cigarettes as safe as possible. There was always going to be an initial phase where shop owners got used to the guidelines. But it is clear that more work needs to be done.”
Despite almost every dedicated bricks and mortar vape vendor offering free help to beginners, packs containing instructions on how to charge devices, and advice being relayed through social media, Gemma must have missed these warnings.
Ms Durant’s family has been forced to flee their home in Gwynedd, after it was devastated by smoke and water damage. Phone chargers have a high current output, something most beginner kits are not able to handle, and will cause batteries to overheat – causing fires.
Gemma used a phone charger with her tiny device, the results were all too predictable. Lead fire investigation officer Dave Paul said: “We would advise that people only use the charger that is supplied by the manufacturer with any electrical device such as a phone, laptop, tablet, or even an e-cigarette. If this charger needs replacing, then purchase manufacturer recommended products only.”
"I'd also ask that people take extra care of when and where they are charging their devices. Don't leave electronic devices charging when you are out of the room, or leave them charging overnight. Consideration should also be given to the surface on which you place your device to charge; people should refrain from leaving charging devices on beds, carpets or settees and ensure they are left on a firm, surface such as a table or worktop.”
"If disaster did strike and fire did break out in your home, it's essential that you are able to get out and call 999. Working smoke alarms give you and your family the vital extra seconds needed to escape a fire, and therefore I'd remind everyone of the importance of having smoke alarms fitted on every level of the home and that they are tested weekly.”