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Heaters being sold on TikTok and Temu ‘could explode’, watchdog says | UK News

​​​​​​​Electric heaters that could explode, cause electric shocks or start house fires are being sold on TikTok and Temu, consumer group Which? has warned.

The watchdog bought and tested eight heaters costing as little as £7.20 from TikTok Shop and Temu, finding that six were unsafe.

Testing found the £7.20 XH-1201 1200W portable electric heater bought from TikTok was a fire hazard and also an explosion threat, which could cause electric shocks.

Which? found 16 sellers listing the heater on TikTok, quoting 223 sales.

An identical £16.98 portable space heater purchased from Temu from a listing that stated 2,100 had been sold was similarly found capable of giving users an electric shock, causing a fire or blowing up, Which? found.

Another heater, the X7 Portable space heater sold for £14.99 on Temu, had not been properly assembled and the live parts were easy to access, running the risk of electric shock.

The seller Which? bought from had sold 353 of them, but researchers found two more sellers listing identical products and claiming 8,900 sales between them.

The NFJ004 Portable electric heater costing £15.99 on TikTok was so badly made that it too could give owners an electric shock, catch fire or explode, testers found.

Overall, three of the five heaters bought through TikTok for Which? tests were “dangerously unsafe” and the instructions for a fourth were lacking key safety warnings, while all three heaters bought through Temu presented a danger to anyone using them.

Only one of the eight heaters Which? tested from TikTok and Temu was both safe to use in the home and legal to be sold in the UK.

When Which? searched for ‘electric heaters’ on TikTok, it found five videos within the first 100 results promoting the dangerous products, which were marked “paid partnership” or “commission paid”. The videos had more than 100,000 views between them.

Both TikTok and Temu have removed all heaters that failed the testing, along with 27 listings for identical dangerous heaters.

However, Which? said it had found that more similar listings had since appeared in their place.

It has called for online marketplaces to have more legal responsibility for unsafe and illegal products sold to consumers via their platforms.

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Which? head of consumer protection policy Sue Davies said: “It’s vital that the government urgently gives greater legal responsibility to online marketplaces for unsafe products so that they are forced to take action to prevent dangerous products ending up in people’s homes.”

Temu said all four heaters identified by Which? as safety hazards had been removed from the platform.

The platform said: “We deeply regret any concern or inconvenience caused by the safety issues identified in four electric heaters on our platform. The safety of our customers is our highest priority, and we have taken immediate action to address this issue.”

TikTok said: “If TikTok finds merchants or products that violate their policies, they remove them.”

A Department for Business and Trade spokeswoman said: “Manufacturers and suppliers are required to place only safe products on the market and are responsible for issuing instructions on how a product can safely be used. If anyone has concerns about an unsafe product, they should provide the relevant information and we will consider it.”

‘Pints’ of wine to be sold in Britain for the first time | UK News

Britons will soon be able to buy a “pint” of wine, with a new 568ml bottle set to appear on supermarket shelves and in pubs, clubs and restaurants.

Pint bottles of champagne were sold in the UK before Britain joined the European Common Market, and remained on shelves until 1973.

However, their production ceased because they did not comply with EU weight and measure rules.

Now, some 900 UK vineyards – which produce 12.2 million bottles of still or sparkling wine a year – are set to benefit from new post-Brexit “freedoms”, the government has said.

The changes will also allow new quantities of both pre-packed still and sparkling wine – in bottles or cans – to be sold in 200ml and 500ml quantities alongside the new 568ml “pint” quantity.

Currently, still wine cannot be sold in 200ml quantities and sparkling wine cannot be sold in 500ml amounts.

The standard size of a bottle of wine sold in supermarkets, off-licences, pubs and bars is 750ml. Legally, pubs must sell wine in small (125ml), medium (175ml) or large (250ml) glass sizes.

There will be no legal obligation for businesses to sell the new sizes.

WineGB chief executive Nicola Bates said: “We welcome the chance to be able to harmonise still and sparkling bottle sizes and we are happy to raise a glass to the greater choice.”

Kevin Hollinrake, Minister for Enterprise, Markets and Small Business, said: “Our exit from the EU was all about moments just like this, where we can seize new opportunities and provide a real boost to our great British wineries and further growing the economy.”

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Alcohol duty shake-up explained

UK rejects return to imperial system

The changes have been introduced following a government consultation on units of measurement, which was published in June last year and received more than 100,000 responses.

The consultation also considered government proposals to remove the requirement to show metric units alongside imperial or allow them to be shown in less prominence.

In 2000, the European Union weights and measures directive forced UK traders to use metric when selling packaged or loose goods such as fruit and veg. They could still use pounds and ounces but must also list grams and kilos, except for a few items.

The government’s consultation was branded “complete and utter nonsense” by one supermarket boss.

And it seemed the rest of the UK agreed – the Department for Business and Trade found 98.7% of people were in favour of continuing to use metric units when buying or selling products.

In the metric system, 1,000 grams are equivalent to one kilogram, yet under the imperial system there are 14 pounds in a stone and 16 ounces in a pound. 1 imperial pound is 453.592g. As for liquids, there are 20 fluid ounces in a pint and 160 fluid ounces in a gallon, instead of metric’s 1,000 millilitres in a litre.

Mary Earps replica goalkeeper shirt to be sold by Nike after backlash | UK News

A limited number of replica Mary Earps goalshirts are finally being made available to buy by Nike.

The England women’s team’s home and away kits have been available for fans to buy from Nike since earlier this year, however, Earps’ goalkeeper kits had not been put up for sale.

The manufacturer has faced pressure to stock the replica shirts, with more than 73,000 people signing a petition.

“We’ve seen and share the unprecedented passion and interest in women’s football this year and remain committed to playing our part by offering the best products and services to athletes and fans,” Nike said in a statement.

“We invested more in this year’s WC [World Cup] than any other global tournament to date.

“Nike has secured limited quantities of goalkeeper jerseys for England, US, France, and the Netherlands to be sold through the Federation websites over the coming days, and we are also in conversations with our other Federation partners.

“We recognise that during the tournament we didn’t serve those fans who wished to show their passion and support to the squad’s goalkeepers. We are committed to retailing women’s goalkeeping jerseys for major tournaments in the future.”

Soccer Football - FIFA Women's World Cup Australia and New Zealand 2023 - Final - Spain v England - Stadium Australia, Sydney, Australia - August 20, 2023 England's Mary Earps saves a penalty from Spain's Jennifer Hermoso REUTERS/Carl Recine
Earps saved a penalty in the World Cup final

Nike has yet to confirm how many shirts will be available or when they’ll be on sale.

Earps spoke out on the controversy earlier this week when Nike issued a statement saying they were “committed to women’s football” despite the fact the shirts weren’t on sale.

“We hear and understand the desire for a retail version of a goalkeeper jersey and we are working towards solutions for future tournaments,” the manufacturer had said.

Earps, 30, responded on Instagram: “@Nike, is this your version of an apology/taking accountability /a powerful statement of intent?”.

Prior to the World Cup, Earps said that the lack of a replica shirt represented a “scary message being sent to goalkeepers worldwide that you are not important”.

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She added: “[Kids] are going to say ‘Mum, dad, can I have a Mary Earps shirt?’ And they’ll say, ‘I can’t, but I can get you an Alessia Russo 23, or a Rachel Daly 9.’

“And so what you are saying is that goalkeeping isn’t important, but you can be a striker if you want.”

Earps played in every minute of England’s World Cup games and heroically saved a penalty in the final against Spain.

She was awarded the goalkeeper of the tournament award, the golden glove.

Unsafe carbon monoxide alarms that fail to detect potentially lethal gas are being sold online | UK News

Dangerous carbon monoxide alarms are being sold online, Which? has warned.

The consumer watchdog says devices that fail to detect high levels of the potentially lethal gas were found on eBay, Amazon, AliExpress and Wish.

Which? claims the government is failing to take “urgent action” to hold these marketplaces to account – and it first flagged one of the unsafe models to eBay seven years ago.

That device failed to respond to carbon monoxide in 10 out of 28 tests – and even when it did, the alarm was too quiet.

Pic: Which?
Pic: Which?

A total of 149 listings for dangerous carbon monoxide alarms were discovered across the four websites – and all of them have now been removed.

eBay was the only company to disclose sales figures, and revealed at least 1,311 had been sold on its platform.

Five dangerous alarm models – all unbranded and made in China – featured prominently on these websites when the “cheapest first” filter was chosen, with some being offered for as little as £5.

One alarm failed to trigger 22 times when carbon monoxide was in the air, while another product didn’t sound in 15 separate tests.

Sue Davies, the watchdog’s head of consumer protection policy, said: “Which? has been raising concerns about dangerous CO alarms for years, yet online marketplaces continue to allow them on their sites and into people’s homes, despite the potentially fatal consequences.

“This is the latest in a long line of examples of unsafe products being readily available on online marketplaces, with far too little action taken by the platforms to prevent them being allowed for sale.

“The government cannot delay any longer. It must move at pace to establish new regulations that put consumer safety first and enable tough enforcement action against online marketplaces that break the rules.”

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Pic: Which?
Pic: Which?

Avril and Gordon Samuel founded the Katie Haines Memorial Trust in 2010 following the death of their daughter from CO poisoning and have been campaigning for better awareness.

Avril said: “We have previously highlighted concerns about some carbon monoxide alarms being sold online, many coming from China, and campaigned vigorously about the need to purchase CO alarms only from reputable manufacturers and retailers.”

She added: “If the alarm is not to standard, this defence is negated and could have fatal results.”

Figures indicate that carbon monoxide poisoning has caused more than 200 accidental deaths in England and Wales in the last decade.

An Amazon spokesman said: “Safety is a top priority at Amazon. We require all products to comply with applicable laws and regulations and have developed industry-leading tools to prevent unsafe or non-compliant products from being listed in our stores.

“We have removed these products pending further investigation.”

Pic: Which?
Pic: Which?

An eBay spokesman said: “We take the safety of our users very seriously and immediately removed the listings reported to us by Which?

“We prohibit unbranded and unsafe brands of smoke or carbon monoxide detectors. We only allow sellers to list approved brands of carbon monoxide detectors and have taken action against the sellers who breached this policy.

“We continuously review and update the measures in place to prevent the sale of unsafe products. We have also conducted further sweeps of our site to remove any similar listings.”

A Department for Business and Trade spokesman said: “We take public safety extremely seriously which is why we are consulting on modernising our product safety framework to hold online marketplaces to account, ensuring items sold online meet the same standards as on the high street.

“If businesses don’t comply with product safety regulations, the Office for Product Safety and Standards will take appropriate enforcement action such as ordering the removal of the product from the market.”

HRT to be sold over-the-counter without prescription for first time | UK News

A medicine for menopausal women is to be sold without a prescription for the first time in the UK.

Boots said it will sell a hormone replacement therapy over the counter, as well as online.

The high street chain will be offering Gina 10 microgram vaginal tablets for £29.99 for 24 tablets.

The drug, which was reclassified from a prescription-only medicine to a pharmacy medicine by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) earlier this year, treats one of the symptoms of menopause, vaginal atrophy.

This occurs when reduced oestrogen levels in the body lead to a thinning, drying and inflammation of the vaginal wall.

The medicine, manufactured by Novo Nordisk, treats the condition by replacing the reduced oestrogen.

Boots said it is the first to sell a hormone replacement therapy over the counter, as well as online. Gina. Pic: Boots
Picture: Boots

It will be available for women aged 50 and over who have not had a period in at least a year.

Before purchasing the treatment, women will have a consultation with a pharmacist to ensure it is the right medicine for them.

Those buying online will have an online consultation.

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It was revealed earlier this year, a shortage of hormone replacement therapy medication has left some women sharing prescriptions and feeling suicidal.

The issue first came to light at the end of April 2022, with doctors warning some women are resorting to unorthodox methods to get the medication they need.

Symptoms of menopause can be so debilitating that a recent survey found one in ten women have quit their job because of it.

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Bina Mehta, a pharmacist at Boots, said: “Oestrogen levels decline after the menopause and can lead to changes in vaginal health that cause uncomfortable symptoms like vaginal dryness and itching.

(left to right) Dr Louise Newson, Mariella Frostrup, MP Carolyn Harris, Penny Lancaster and Davina McCall with protesters outside the Houses of Parliament in London demonstrating against ongoing prescription charges for HRT (Hormone replacement therapy). Picture date: Friday October 29, 2021.
Celebrities like Penny Lancaster and Davina McCall have campaigned for HRT treatments to be free from prescription charges

“Unlike other menopause symptoms, these are usually chronic and progressive and will not resolve without treatment.

“Menopause is a natural process and everyone’s experience is different.

“I encourage those who are going through any stage of the menopause to come and speak to their local pharmacist for personalised advice and recommendations alongside guidance, where appropriate, on how to optimise HRT treatments – we are here to help.”

Boots is launching the product on Thursday and rolling it out to all stores by the end of October.