Claim compensation for power cuts due to Storm Arwen
1st Dec 2021
Storm Arwen brought extensive disruption to power supply to many parts of rural Northumberland, and you may be entitled to compensation if you experienced cuts to your power.
We have pulled together information on receiving compensation and how claim below. The energy regulator Ofgem also provides information on how you can get compensation for supply problems to gas and electricity. Residents have three months to claim compensation.
Unplanned electricity power cuts
You are entitled to compensation if you have been without power for a prolonged period of time.
You can apply for compensation by contacting your local network operator. They are different to your energy supplier. The majority of Northumberland is covered by Northern Powergrid, with an area from Wooler to Cornhill covered by Scottish Power Energy Network. You can check which is your operator by using the online postcode checker or ringing either operator.
How to claim
"We will calculate the amount of compensation due and proactively send you a cheque. This straightforward approach will ensure the majority of our customers will receive their payment without having to contact us.
"For customers where we do not hold all the information we need, we will send you a letter inviting you to provide the required details. You will be able to do this via our secure website, by calling us or by returning the form we will provide. These letters will start to be issued this week (17 December 2021). We will let you know when we have written out to all the affected customers so that you may contact us if you have not heard from us by then.
"All payments will be made via cheque, mitigating the risk of fraud. We will not request any bank details from you at any time."
Previously they advised people to claim by email where possible, sending receipts for expenses to StormArwen@northernpowergrid.com or to call them on 0800 011 3332.
Scottish Power Energy Network
They have advised you do not need to get in touch to claim compensation, they will pay a goodwill payment before Christmas of £150 to every household affected, and then be in touch proactively to discuss the standard compensation and any additional costs incurred.
SPEN is offering additional compensation of £150 per household to those off for more than 48 hours as well as a 'Guaranteed Standard Payment' ranging from £70 up to £630 depending on how long you were cut off for.
The SPEN goodwill of an extra £150 will be a proactive payment to customers, paid automatically to those eligible and paid before Christmas. The Guaranteed Standard Payment following the normal regulatory process will be paid separately.
For customers eligible for statutory compensation (the Guaranteed Standard Payment) and reimbursement for hot food or hotel costs…etc, SPEN have advised they will be in touch proactively over the coming weeks to make arrangements. These payments will follow the normal regulatory process and be paid separately.
You can find further detailed information about applying for compensation on the Ofgem website.
How much will I get?
The limit on the amount of compensation available to those affected by Storm Arwen has been removed which means you may be entitled to receive up to £140 a day for each day you are without electricity until you are reconnected.
£70 compensation is available for the first 48 hours, and then £70 for every 12 hours thereafter without power. The additional compensation will apply to customers without power for more than 6.5 days, which would otherwise have been capped at £700.
Electricity network operators are also offering to recompensate reasonable expenses for accommodation, and other reasonably incurred costs; for example, where a customer arranges for their own back-up generator. People are advised to keep receipts to claim a refund.
How to receive the compensation money
Usually, the distribution company will send the payment to your supplier who will then credit it to your account - although some may pay you directly if they have your details. Following Storm Arwen Northern Powergrid will be paying by cheque directly to households.
You should be paid within 10 days of claiming from your electricity supplier or within 10 days of the end of an electricity power cut if you're being paid automatically.
If you are not paid within these timescales you can get more compensation of £30 for late payment from your electricity supplier.
Contact details for claims
Northern Powergrid – electricity distributor for the majority of Northumberland:
Tel: 0800 011 3332
Scottish Power Energy Networks – electricity distribution for Wooler to Cornhill area:
They have advised you do NOT need to get in touch to claim compensation, it will be paid automatically.
Check who is your network operator by entering your postcode at the tool below:
Northern Gas Networks for gas claims:
Tel: 0800 040 7766 and press option 3
What to do in an emergency
- Call 105 free or visit powercut105.com if you have a power cut or spot cable damage.
- Call the National Gas Emergency Service if you smell gas on 0800 111 999.
- Always call 999 in an emergency.
Priority Services Register
You can get extra help with power cuts if you sign up to the Priority Service Register. For example, if you are elderly or need power for vital medical equipment. Contact your local distribution company on the numbers above for more details and to be added.
CAN’s energy advice in rural Northumberland
Contact our Energy Advisers:
Leanne Shipley firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 07724 867010
Myra Milne email@example.com Tel: 0771 5408343
Christine Nicholls firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 07827 403837
Latest information on Storm Arwen recovery
Northumberland County Council has information and support for those affected by Storm Arwen.
Ofgem has information on how you can get compensation for supply problems to gas and electricity. Residents have three months to claim compensation.
The Energy Networks Association also has the latest on Storm Arwen with updates on compensation.
Download the Northern Powergrid Guaranteed Standards of Service Information guide for customers which has information about compensation.
Download the Northumbrian Water 'Our Promise To You' guide which has information about standards of service and compensation.