Weights and measures is one of the traditional foundation stones of the work of the Office of Fair Trading. Officers test the accuracy of equipment used for sales by weight or measure and pose as customers to make “test purchases” of goods to check that the equipment is being used fairly. Inspections are carried out regularly at trade premises such as petrol stations and supermarkets to ensure that both consumers and traders can be confident of dealing fairly.
Traditionally the Weights and Measures Inspector would do very little other than test weights and measures.
19th and 20th Century 'bell' weights
The modern day Trading Standards Officer still does those tests but also has a much wider and very varied range of tasks to do. Weighing and measuring has developed into a highly specialised branch of science known as metrology (not to be confused with meteorology, the study of weather, which we leave to the weatherman!).
Our Metrology Laboratory houses the Manx Standards of weight, capacity and length - the very accurate reference standards to which all measurement in the Island can be traced. The Laboratory provides a fast and accurate service for the calibration of weights, capacity and length measures. Equipment calibrated in our laboratory is traceable back to the United Kingdom’s National Standards or to natural standards which never change (the wavelength of light). We can also hire out accurately calibrated weights to businesses for calibration purposes.
The laboratory offers an accurate and impartial measurement service which is used by industry for many purposes including the evaluation of goods against specification.
Being Island based we can offer a rapid turnaround time without the delays and risks associated with sending valuable and delicate equipment away for calibration. Charges for calibration, weighing or measuring and hiring out weights are reviewed from time to time. Please contact the Office to find out what the current charges are - telephone 686520 or email us.