DRIFTING snow and high winds could set back efforts to restore power to hundreds of homes and businesses today and leave some properties without electricity - including those who were hit by Storm Arwen last weekend.

By late last night, Northern Powergrid said the number of customers still affected by power cuts as a result of Storm Arwen was at about 500 – and it was hoping to have reduced that number further by this morning.

But as the company continues its major restoration efforts after parts of its electricity network, particularly in Northumberland and County Durham, were devastated last weekend it said its teams were ready to respond if Storm Barra affects the network.

Read more: Army staying in County Durham as Storm Barra to bring fresh misery to residents

Working in ongoing challenging conditions, its teams had restored power to around 239,300 of the 240,000 customers affected by Storm Arwen by last night.

A Met Office yellow weather warning is in place across the whole of the UK for today with the forecast including drifting snow in the Pennine regions of Northumberland, County Durham and Yorkshire and gusty winds across the whole of the North East and Yorkshire.

Northern Powergrid last night warned that Storm Barra could impact its network on higher ground and potentially disrupt customers, including those previously affected by Storm Arwen.

The storm’s arrival during the daytime could also impact the network operator’s work to rebuild overhead lines as it continues to get the remaining affected customers back on supply after Storm Arwen.

Its teams will continue to work wherever it is safe to do so, it said.

The network operator has a fleet of 4x4 and, other specialist access equipment which it will use should windborne debris, trees and other vegetation damage its overhead power lines and the weather makes travel and site access difficult.

The company’s website – northernpowergrid.com - will be available for customers to get updates and report their power cut and it has teams available 24/7 by calling 105.

The Northern Echo:

The Northern Echo:

Power cut tips and advice include:

• bookmarking Northern Powergrid's online power cut map and reporting service on their mobile devices –com/power-cuts

• having a charged mobile phone with important numbers, including 105, easily accessible

• turning off electrical appliances at the socket (this is particularly important for heating or cooking appliances as your power could be restored at any time and potentially cause a safety hazard)

• keeping one light switched on so you know when power is restored

• keeping a battery or wind-up torch handy – as they're much safer than candles

• checking on your elderly or sick neighbours and relatives

• ensure you have warm clothing and blankets handy and some food and drink in your home that does not require electricity to heat or prepare it, and

• only call 999 in an emergency.


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