In a recent safety check by Darlington Borough Council’s Trading Standards team and AGE UK Darlington, one third of electric blankets tested in Darlington were found to be unsafe to use.
More than 90 blankets were tested this year with 30 being found to be unsafe for use, a failure rate of 33 percent. The faulty blankets were taken out of circulation and their owners offered a free replacement blanket.
Electrical related fires account for almost half of the accidental domestic fires in the UK.
Councillor Chris McEwan, Darlington Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Economy and Regeneration said: “Despite testing being run for several years now we still find a large number of blankets failing each year. This free testing is invaluable and saves lives as many people do not consider the potential dangers of using an electric blanket, especially an old or damaged one.”
A campaign is underway to try and save a financial advice service for people with cancer in Darlington.
Every year, a Welfare Rights Officer helps hundreds of people with access to health benefits and advice on budgeting.
Those who use the service say it's invaluable as often, money is tight because they have been forced to stop working and must pay for regular hospital visits.
Jonny Blair reports:
A campaign has started to try to save a financial advice service which helps cancer sufferers in Darlington.
Every year, a Welfare Rights Officer helps hundreds of people to access health benefits which they're entitled to and gives advice about money.
Those who've used the service say it's invaluable as, often, they have to stop working and pay for frequent hospital visits.
Funding for the post is due to end in March.
Allison White says the service is a "great help":
Darlington Borough Council’s dog warden team has been awarded the GOLD Stray Footprint award from the RSPCA for the fifth year in a row.
The award recognises the work that the team does in dealing with and looking after stray dogs found in the area. It covers all aspects of working with stray dogs from collection and kennelling to treating injured or sick dogs and attempts made to find a dog’s owner.
Over the last year, the dog warden team has dealt with 524 dogs, 311 of which were happily reunited with their owners.
'Sheer good fortune' saw bus crash victims walk away with minor injuriesRead the full story ›
North Yorkshire Police have released a statement confirming the latest information they have regarding this morning's bus crash.
They say 19 students were on the bus, 11 of which were taken to hospital to injuries and two adults who were in the van which crashed with the bus.
All casualties however have now been discharged from hospital.
This is an update following the collision involving a college bus and a van near Aldbrough St John.
There were 19 students on the bus, 16 were from Darlington College, three were from Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form College in Darlington.
Nine students were taken to hospital, including two from Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form College.
The driver of the bus was not taken to hospital.
The driver and a passenger from the van were both taken to hospital.
All casualties have now been discharged from hospital including the occupants of the van.
Speaking to ITV Tyne Tees, Kathryn MacColl, Communications manager at Darlington College, says the school are relieved that the students' injuries were only minor.
Nonetheless, the entire experience has been "a traumatic day for all students and their families".
A Darlington College spokesman has said: "A total of 14 students from the college were involved and some from a different school.
They have varying degrees of injury, some are going to hospital for a precaution. We think one has a broken nose.
We have sent staff to the scene along with counsellors to do as much as they can to help.
The most important thing is that no one was seriously injured and it could have been a lot worse."
Our reporter on the scene has been told all students on the bus were aged 16, except one 18 year old. A driver has also been injured.