Normally, blankets are tested at the Council offices but this could not take place this year with them being closed due to Covid-19 restrictions.
However, after we joined forces with Oxfordshire County Council Trading Standards, the Oxfordshire Fire Service, Age UK and the four other district councils in the county, the safety tests were carried out remotely.
In West Oxfordshire, a total of 116 blankets were collected from residents’ homes in specially sealed bags and taken to the test centre. Those that passed the test were returned on the same day.
Residents with blankets that failed were contacted by telephone to discuss further action including a free replacement. Over two weeks, 756 blankets across Oxfordshire were tested with 159 failing.
Oxfordshire is believed to be the only county in the country providing this service this year.
Cllr Merilyn Davies, Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said: “This was a fantastic effort by our officers working as a team with colleagues and volunteers across the County.
“They ensured this vital service was able to continue and people can sleep soundly knowing their blanket is safe this winter.”
Anyone who missed the testing but needs further information should see: https://www.electricalsafetyfirst.org.uk/guidance/product-safety/electric-blankets/