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  • Preparing for a power cut

    If bad weather is on the way or we have let you know we need to turn off your power to carry out planned maintenance, follow our tips to prepare and stay safe.

  • Keeping the lights on safely is our number one priority, and we invest millions every year to upgrade and strengthen our network; however, even with this investment and maintenance, there are times when the power does go off.

    On other occasions, we may need to turn your power off for a short time to carry out essential maintenance; when this is the case, we will always give you as much notice as possible.

    In this short video, we'll share some simple tips to help you plan ahead in case your power ever goes off.

    • Keep a battery-powered radio tuned in to your local radio station.

    • Keep a torch with fresh batteries in a place where you can reach it easily.

    • If you use other forms of heating and lighting, such as paraffin heaters and candles, don't leave them unattended.

    • Switch off appliances and lights, but leave one light on so you know when power has been restored.

    • If you have elderly or infirm neighbours, check to make sure they are comfortable. If you know of anyone who needs priority service, eg anyone on a ventilator or dialysis machine, please contact our Priority Services team by phoning 0800 294 3259.

    • If we have warned you in advance that the electricity will be turned off, boil some water and keep it in a thermos flask. You can use it to make hot drinks or fill a hot water bottle if it gets too cold.

    • Don’t open the freezer door unless you have to – this helps food stay frozen for longer. When the power comes back on, check the food inside. Food should keep for about eight hours without power. If the food is still hard and icy, you can leave it in the freezer. Turn the freezer to its maximum setting for 24 hours, before putting it back on a setting that keeps it at -18°C.

    • If the food has started to defrost, you may need to throw it away. Discard any food you would eat when it is frozen such as ice cream, if it has started to defrost. Do not refreeze these foods. If meat, fish, or foods containing them, have started to get soft, throw them away too. Watch out for liquid coming out of defrosting raw meat because this could spread bacteria to other foods.