Extra support for vulnerable householders during a power cut

15 August 2019

Power cuts - and we've seen one pretty high-profile example last week - can be particularly inconvenient, or even distressing, for people living with a disability or who are, for example, dependent on electricity for medical equipment.

This is why energy companies are obliged to provide extra services in case of a power cut to their more vulnerable customers, for example households in which someone:

  • Is aged over 60 or under 5.
  • Relies on electricity for medical reasons or for mobility equipment.
  • Has a hearing or visual impairment.
  • Has a disability or long term health condition.

CSE works with two of the UK’s electricity distribution companies - Western Power Distribution and Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks - to sign people up to their Priority Services Register (PSR). Their areas are those coloured green or blue on the map. This gives:

  • Advanced notice of planned interruptions to your electricity supply.
  • Advice on how to be prepared for a power cut, what to do if one happens and, if necessary, a cold weather crisis pack.
  • A direct number to call to get straight through to the network operator in the event of an unplanned power cut.
  • Special help, if needed, from emergency response organisations.

CSE's Paul Winney said "A power cut is an inconvenience for most of us, but can be a lot worse for some. Being on the priority services register gives people extra reassurance that help may be available if required.

"We urge other organisations to share the link to our sign-up page so that as many people as possible benefit from the extra support on offer."

If you live in Western Power Distribution or Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks' regions (see map), you can sign up to their PSR on this page on our advice site.

Water outages
If you are a customer of Wessex Water, Bristol Water, Thames Water, Bournemouth Water or South West Water we can sign you up to their PSR as well. You can do this on the same page as the electricity companies' PSRs.

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