TRADING standards officers are warning residents about dodgy counterfeit electronic chargers.

Essex County County’s department is asking shoppers to be careful when buying chargers for smart phones, tablets and other devices, claiming some pose a risk of electric shocks and fire.

Earlier in the year they tested 20 phone chargers and found one in five failed expert texts and posed a serious risk.

The chargers are usually copies of manufacturer’s original products.

The latest complaint received by the council was about an adaptor advertised for iPads. It was marked as a Foxlink product which had been ‘designed by Apple in California’, however it was a fake.

The internal construction did not have a current overload protection device and there was inadequate insulation between the input and output circuits. This meant there was a risk of fire and electrocution.

The council is now working with representatives from Apple to stop sales of the fake Foxlink product.

Roger Walters, responsible for trading standards, said: “Trading standards officers do their best to keep the residents of Essex safe through use of intelligence.

“Advice is provided to Essex importers and manufacturers, but consumers must be vigilant when buying plug-in mains chargers and should only make a purchase from a reputable retailer.”

Anyone with concerns about a product should contact trading standards on 08454040506.