STORMS UPDATE – final briefing from Aberdeenshire Council and report from SSEN

By bellmannews / February 3, 2022
waves crashing over breakwater creating a frame around downie point

From Aberdeenshire Council communications team –

As we draw an end to our daily updates around Storm Malik/Corrie, there are still around 30 properties without power across Aberdeenshire, however engineers remain committed to reconnecting these final customers as quickly and safely as possible.

SSEN currently has welfare facilities in the following locations until 8pm tonight (Thurs):

Ballater, Victoria Square

Braemar, opposite The Fife Arms Hotel

Edzell, The Muir Park

Potterton, Pavilion car park

Stonehaven, The Square

For further details and progress on power reconnections please visit

http://news.ssen.co.uk/news/all-articles/2022/january/storm-malik-update/

Recovery phase

Aberdeenshire Council and its resilience partners also continue to provide additional support for those affected and we wish to thank all those individuals and community groups who have reached out to those without power and supported them during another challenging storm event.

While our focus now moves into the recovery phase, we would like to take this opportunity to recognise the huge efforts undertaken by so many people during the past few days.

From the dedicated support provided by council teams and resilience partners to the outstanding efforts of community groups and local businesses, we have all demonstrated once again just how well we can work together in such challenging times.

During this recovery period we will continue to work with and support our communities, residents and businesses as they resume life after yet another damaging storm incident, particularly so soon after Storm Arwen.

We will also take a collective approach in terms of the lessons learned from Storm Arwen and these most recent storms to ensure we are all better prepared to respond quickly and efficiently to future weather events.”

Live Life Aberdeenhire

All Live Life Aberdeenshire facilities are available up until 8pm tonight (Thurs) for access to a hot shower and phone charging, etc including Stonehaven Leisure Centre

SSEN support for accommodation and meals

For customers without power who need support and are unable to make alternative arrangements to stay with family or a friend, SSEN will reimburse reasonable costs for alternative accommodation.

Customers unable to access welfare facilities and who remain off supply may claim back the cost of meals up to £15 per person. Customers are being asked to keep copies of receipts for any claims.

Private Water Supplies

Residents that cannot use their private water supply due to a power cut preventing them from drawing or treating water should source bottled water for themselves where possible.

Where a resident is unable to leave their property to source bottled water (due to self-isolation, for instance) they should contact the assistance line on 0808 196 3384 between 9am and 5pm for support in obtaining a supply of water. For urgent requests out of hours, please contact 07342 088 339.

Where it is not possible for residents to treat their private water supply due to power failure, the water should be boiled before use.

Residents are advised that, when power returns, treatment systems should be checked, cleaned and disinfected as appropriate. Checks should also be made to ensure that treatment equipment is operating effectively and that no damage has been caused due to a lack of water or frost protection.

Until residents are sure their water is safe to drink it should be boiled prior to use or an alternative supply should be used.

Further advice on private water supplies can be found at

https://www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/environment/environmental-health/private-water-supplies/

Tree clearance

Our teams and outside contractors continue to undertake felling and clearing works around Aberdeenshire and we thank you for your patience as we undertake this significant task – often making emergency road closures to facilitate this work.

Please remember, fallen, overhanging and hung-up trees represent a serious danger to safety and affected areas should be avoided at all times.

Phone numbers

  • To report fallen trees on the roads network – 03456 08 12 05 (during office hours)
  • Power outages – via SSEN on 105 
  • Non-urgent medical issues – via NHS on 111
  • Aberdeenshire Council customer services – 03456 081208
  • Emergency council housing repairs – 03456 081203  
  • Emergency social care – 03456 081206

The information in this update can also be found at: https://online.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/apps/news/release.aspx?newsID=8448

SSEN restores power to homes affected by Storms Malik and Corrie – 7pm update

From SSEN –

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) has now restored all reported customer faults following Storms Malik and Corrie.

SSEN would like to thank customers for their patience as our teams worked to safely reconnect over 120,000 homes in the north of Scotland affected by Storms Malik and Corrie, which brought gusts of over 90mph to the region.

Across both storms, SSEN’s network experienced in excess of 450 high voltage network faults caused by fallen trees and wind-borne debris striking overhead power lines. The intensity of the wind gusts, stronger than Storm Arwen in some locations, caused multiple damages to SSEN’s infrastructure, requiring complex repairs.

Storm Malik caused significant damage to our network in North East Scotland, particularly Ballater, Braemar, Tarland, Kintore and Banchory in Aberdeenshire. Although more widespread in impact across the north, areas such as Stonehaven and Edzell faced the worst of Storm Corrie, with record wind speeds recorded.

We will continue to deploy an enhanced workforce in the North East of Scotland ready to carry out any necessary further repairs and maintenance of mobile generators as required. SSEN teams will be on hand to support our customers if needed at this stage.

SSEN has received a large number of notifications from customers with over 46,000 calls to our Customer Contact Centre, and over 13,000 messages received on our social media channels. Now that all known faults have been restored, to ensure that we have visibility of all power interruptions and network damage at a local level, any customer without power who has not contacted SSEN by phone or Power Track to report the power cut, should contact SSEN on 105.

SSEN continues to urge customers not to approach any damage to its infrastructure and instead, report it to SSEN by calling 105 or via its Power Track App and engineers will investigate as soon as possible.   

Richard Gough, Director of Distribution System Operations at SSEN, said: 

“I would like to thank our communities for their continued patience as our teams have worked hard to restore power in challenging circumstances. Coming just weeks after the extensive damage caused by Storm Arwen, the dual impact of Storms Malik and Corrie posed a significant and unique challenge, with often complex repairs being undertaken while battling conditions and balancing priorities.

“I’d also like to recognise the remarkable efforts of teams from SSEN, other electricity network companies and contract partners across the UK and Ireland, whose hard work in very challenging conditions has helped us to restore power safely to communities across the North of Scotland and ensured our customers were supported.  Equally, the close co-operation with local resilience partners, who did a fantastic job in supporting customers and communities on the ground, has been great to see.

“Our concentration and alert status remain the same for the time being as we focus on repairing the network damage needed for system resilience, but not affecting customer supplies. SSEN teams will carry out remedial repairs and identify any further damage on our localised network. We have contacted all customers involved in the power restoration activities today and we are asking any customers who are returning to an unoccupied property or who have not been in contact with us and are still without power, to contact 105 as soon as possible.”

Additional information  

SSEN is urging people to not approach any damage to its equipment and instead, report it to SSEN by calling 105 or via its Power Track App and engineers will investigate as soon as possible.    

Teams from SSEN’s Customer Contact Centre continue to proactively contact customers on its Priority Services Register (PSR) to keep them updated and to offer extra support where possible, with over 54,000 proactive contacts to warn customers in advance of the storm.    

SSEN’s Priority Services Register (PSR) provides extra help and support during a power cut. Customers are eligible for SSEN’s free priority services if they:     

  • Are deaf or hard of hearing 
  • Have a disability 
  • Live with children under five
  • Are blind or partially sighted
  • Have a chronic illness
  • Use medical equipment/aids reliant on electricity
  • Are over 60 
  • Temporarily need extra support    

To find out more about the PSR, click here or call 0800 294 3259.