This article informs you the quickest way to report a power cut, and covers how a power cut can affect you at home. Power cuts can also cause downtime and costs to a business, which you can read about in our cost to business article.
How To Report A Power Cut:
By calling 105 to get straight through to your network operator.
A power cut, or power outage can cause major disruption even when it is for planned maintenance but more so when it is unexpected. Most people, in the event of an unplanned power outage try to find details of their electricity supplier to report it.
Whilst this is sometimes the best approach, providing your supplier and the company that maintains the overhead lines, known as the network operator, are the same firm, but in some UK locations this is not the case.
To make it easy for everyone, no matter where you live to report a power cut – all electricity companies in the UK are now in a scheme to make it much easier to get straight through to your network operator. This is the company responsible for the electricity distribution – which is not always the company you pay your bills to.
Simply call 105, a free of charge number, and you will be directed to the local network operator for your area. Don’t forget, if you spot immediate danger you should also call the relevant emergency services.
The 105 number is not just for power cuts, you can also use it to report damaged lines (with no immediate risk), or damaged substations and so on.
As soon as you see something which needs to be reported, or you are suffering from an unplanned power cut, call 105.
How Can A Power Cut Affect You?
- No lights – internally, this can be quite dangerous. Especially at night and in winter months. We rely on lighting for everything inside our homes, from safety on the stairs, cooking, reading almost everything relies on having lighting. Returning home to a dark house, when living in a remote area can also be difficult and dangerous in cold dark winter nights without any outside lights to guide you to your door. Try to keep a torch and some candles in your house at all times for safety.
- No cooking – If you suffer from a long unplanned power cut, which can be the case during storms or winter times in particular, you will be unable to use any electric ovens, microwaves or even boiling your kettle. We wrote an article on how to prepare for a power cut, which suggests boiling some water and keeping it in a flask for hot drinks, but when the power cut is unexpected you are unlikely to have this. Some gas appliances may still work however you would not have any mains powered smoke alarms or safety equipment so using any form of large cooking equipment (if you can) in a power cut is not advised.
- No charge – we all heavily rely on our mobile phones, laptops, tablets or gadgets to keep us connected or entertained. Without power you would be unable to charge any devices. You may be ‘lucky’ and have a high amount of battery life in your devices as the power trips out, but if not these could run down. It may be worth investing in some rechargeable battery banks to keep devices topped up – but you will have to remember to keep these charged up!
- No wifi – having no broadband or wifi due to a power cut is often overlooked. Many people realise ‘we won’t have the internet’ but they do not realise just how much they rely on it. Even if you do have charged up gadgets, you will not be able to stream anything, listen to music or even use most of the apps on that device unless it has mobile data connection. This can also affect your digital TV if you use some of the popular streaming services, or have an internet based TV box. On top of this many smart speakers within the home now connected through Wifi to play music in multiple rooms at the same time. These may not work without an internet connection.
- No heating – unless you have a traditional log burner, or fire in your home it is highly likely that you will be relying on central heating. Even though these use oil or gas as the main source of fuel – the boiler normally requires electricity to work. Without this, you may not have any heating in your home. This can cause concern, especially for the elderly, young or vulnerable during winter. Keep some blankets and wear extra layers of clothes for safety.
- No hot water – many people not only use their boiler for heating, but also for hot water. You may not be able to pass the time with a bath or shower during a power cut. Well, not a warm one anyway!
- No fridge or freezer – many people think about this one. Without power your fridge and freezer will not work. By keeping the doors closed many appliances will, however, stay cold for many hours.
- No security – this is a concern for anyone with high value items or especially businesses. CCTV, security lighting or alarm systems may not work during a power outage. This could leave you exposed. If you have electric gates you may also need to consider an alternative way to exit your property should you need to in an emergency.
The list above shows how unsettling and disruptive a power cut can be and how a power cut can affect you. It really can take away many of the comforts we take for granted.
One solution to overcome the disruption is to invest in a backup power solution – whether it is a diesel generator or battery solution. Having a backup generator provides peace of mind that in the event of a power cut you can keep your lights on, stay warm and also stay entertained.
We have a large range of home and business backup power solutions. Our 8kW to 28kW 230v range caters for households and businesses that require a single phase supply, then our 55kVA to 550kVA 400v generators cover most industrial applications. If you need any advice on the purchase or specification of a diesel standby power solution that suits your needs feel free to give us a call or contact us using our online enquiry form.