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Storm Arwen devastated parts of our network. We're sorry for the disruption it caused; we've ensured the vast majority of our customers who were due compensation were paid before Christmas.
Update: Thursday 13 January 2022
We understand how challenging Storm Arwen was for our customers who were without power – and we apologise to those who were affected for long periods of times.
The storm caused disruption for over a million properties in Great Britain, including almost 280,000 of the 3.9 million households and businesses we power across the North East, Yorkshire and northern Lincolnshire.
Whilst supplies for everyone affected by the storm were restored since early December, our work has continued with our teams focused on two key things – compensating our customers as quickly as possible and getting our network back to full strength.
Compensating our customers – message from Louise Lowes, Head of Customer Service
As soon as all supplies were restored our priority turned to ensuring we provided payments swiftly to those who were due compensation as we recognised the challenges our customers had faced.
We are making progress. For the majority of our customers who were due a payment it was a straightforward matter of receiving and cashing their cheque, which many have done successfully.
Of the 24,000 cheques we issued, we have received around 1,600 queries and we’re working through them on a case-by-case basis. Around 1,800 customers have asked us to make out their cheque in a different name and over 1,300 are already processed. The rest are expected to be done by the middle of this week.
We also issued more than 5,000 letters asking our customers for the information we need to make sure they get the correct amount – that information is starting to come in now.
In some cases, it is as simple as us needing the name of the customer to whom the cheque will be paid. In others, we need to clarify the details of much more complicated situations where there were multiple incidents that were repaired at different times to ensure we have the full length of the power cut logged for that customer.
We are speaking individually with customers, where necessary, to understand what they experienced to ensure they are compensated properly and where we receive information that clarifies our records, we are applying that to any customer affected, not just the people who informed us. We want to reassure our customers that our teams are working on this as priority.
We still have a lot of work to do, and we want to make sure this is carried out robustly. This will take time, and the increase in COVID cases has affected the number of people we have at work, so please bear with us.
We are committed to supporting our customers and recognise some have experienced hardship.
In line with industry regulations, Guaranteed Standards payments are paid to the bill payer - this is the person who has direct meter point connection to our network. Other customers, who do not have a direct meter point connection to our network but were affected by the Storm, can contact us to discuss their individual situation.
Whilst a guaranteed standard payment may not be due, we will look at individual cases and consider reasonable reimbursement for some of the costs incurred. Please see our guidance for welfare support payments and how to claim below in our ‘Helpful links and FAQs’ section below.
If you have not heard from us and believe you should have, or have any compensation specific questions, please email us at Compensationfirstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have any additional questions or queries relating to Storm Arwen, you can also email us on our dedicated address StormArwen@northernpowergrid.com.
We thank you for your continued patience and we will do all we can to support you and answer your questions as soon as we can.
Getting our network back to full strength – message from Andy Bilclough, Director of Field Operations
Our network is almost back to normal thanks to the great work done by our teams. Across our business our people have worked relentlessly to carry out the extensive permanent repairs needed to put our network back to full strength for our customers.
With more than 1,200 concurrent reports of damage on our network, Storm Arwen proved to be one of the most challenging weather events that our customers, our people and the communities we serve had to face in decades.
Our response included hundreds of people from both within our business and from across the UK and Ireland.
Their combined efforts helped us deliver rebuilds, repair damaged equipment and ensure the vast majority of our customers who had to be temporarily powered by generation were reconnected to our wider network before the festive period ensuring greater security of supply.
We successfully reduced from more than 330 generators in the peak to final 10 in Northumberland with 15 customers, who are associated with the same job in College Valley near Kielder, needing our continued support. Significant tree damage is being cleared by The Forestry Commission to provide us with access to our equipment so we can rebuild the overhead network in the area that was devastated by Storm Arwen.
In the meantime, our robust arrangements to support these customers remain in place to ensure the generators are maintained until we can safely reconnect supplies to our network. We thank those customers, who we continue to keep fully informed directly, for their ongoing patience and understanding.
We also thank our teams for their continued support and dedication to ensuring our network is returned to full strength as soon as possible.
Helpful links and FAQs
Read about the weather impact in our region during Storm Arwen
Want to understand more about compensation payments and how they are calculated?
Want to understand more about welfare payments or have costs you wish to be reimbursed for?
Received a letter from us and need to change the payee name on your Storm Arwen compensation cheque?
Want to access our online welfare reimbursement application form?
Received a letter from us and need to provide your payee name to receive your compensation cheque?
Received a letter from us and need to give us more information about the duration of your power cut?
Believe you may be due compensation and have not heard from us yet?
Read our FAQ about maintaining generators