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Preparing for power cuts

Power lines in stormy clouds
2 November 2023

Our energy networks are designed to withstand high winds, heavy rain, and snow but severe weather can occasionally lead to power outages by bringing down power lines. It’s a good idea to have a plan in case of power cuts.

How to prepare for a power cut

Following these steps to prepare for power cuts can minimise their effects. You can use these if you’ve had an alert about a planned power cut in your area but it’s useful to keep them in mind in case of unplanned cuts as well.

If you feel like you need additional support, you can sign up to the Priority Services Register (PSR).

The Priority Services Register helps to protect people in vulnerable circumstances

While a power cut is disruptive to everyone, people in vulnerable circumstances must protect themselves however they can.

The PSR is a free service for people in England, Scotland and Wales that helps people with additional needs. The type of help available will vary depending on your circumstances, but support includes:

If any of the following apply to you, you can sign up:

Sign up by contacting your energy supplier or local network operator, or, you can use our online form.

If you rely on medical equipment at home, you must understand what will happen to the equipment during a power cut. If you’re unsure, speak to your healthcare provider as soon as possible to make sure your equipment is backed up and has been serviced recently. You can also check any additional steps you might need to take to be safe.

While you’ll be able to receive additional support by signing up for the PSR, be aware that if your area is included in a planned power cut, your home will still lose power along with other homes in the area.

If you’ve already signed up for the PSR, please take some time to ensure your personal information is up to date so that help can reach you if you need it. Contact your energy supplier to do this.

What to do after a power cut

Power should return to your home automatically and within one hour after the expected time of reconnection. If you’re still without power, you can

For more energy advice, check out our advice pages and here is more information about preparing for power cuts.

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