Following guidance from SAGE, the Prime Minister has announced a lockdown for the whole of England from midnight on Thursday 5 November, with all non-essential shops, restaurants, pubs and leisure facilities to close for at least four weeks.
England now joins the rest of the UK where additional restrictions were introduced for people living in Northern Ireland on 16 October; Wales implemented a short, sharp “firebreak” lockdown to help regain control of coronavirus on 23 October while Scotland's new five-tier restrictions to tackle the pandemic are also now in force.
Since the beginning of the pandemic the energy networks, which includes Northern Powergrid, have been ensuring that everyone continues to receive a safe and reliable energy supply. This will not change as the country faces further lockdown restrictions.
The energy networks continue to operate normally, even as we adapt the way we work and manage different types of lockdown nationally and regionally across the country. The work ENA members, including Northern Powergrid, do is critical to keeping the UK’s energy flowing, which is why the Government identifies the work as essential.
Now more than ever, in the run-up to Christmas, network operators know customers are relying on them to keep them safe and warm at home. The energy industry recognises that this is a difficult time for people and everyone needs to work differently. The UK’s energy network operators will continue to prioritise:
- keeping customers and colleagues safe;
- keeping the UK’s energy flowing; and
- looking after those most in need.
Many energy workers need to leave their homes to provide essential services. Where teams have to leave the house to carry out their job, COVID-19 Secure practices and social distancing guidelines issued by the UK Government will be followed.
If customers are self-isolating or have symptoms of COVID-19 and a network operator, like Northern Powergrid, is due to attend your property, customers must advise in advance. This is so teams can take additional precautions to keep everyone safe.
The energy networks will always prioritise power cuts, gas leaks and urgent safety issues to make sure customers continue to receive a safe and reliable energy supply. If seen outside of homes or there is a need to visit a customers' property during lockdown, be assured it is because it is critical. Any work outside will be necessary to ensure customers have power and heat, and to reduce the risk of any future loss of energy supply.
Those who may live in more vulnerable circumstances or deemed at higher risk should consider signing up for energy networks’ Priority Services Registers. This provides free additional services to customers in vulnerable circumstances if there is a power cut or they lose gas supply unexpectedly. Visit www.northernpowergrid.com/care to find out more about Northern Powergrid’s Priority Services Register.
As the Government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic develops, energy networks are continuing to keep their approach under careful review. They will always take an approach which safeguards the health and wellbeing of their customers and colleagues, while maintaining a safe and reliable supply of energy.