Companies’ emergency plans not sufficient to deal with Storm Arwen, finds Ofgem

The regulator has said some companies did not respond quickly enough to deal with the impact the storm had on customers

Big Zero Report 2022

The companies did not have “sufficient” emergency plans to deal with the scale of the Storm Arwen.

That’s the suggestion coming from a report published today by Ofgem following a six-month review that was launched to investigate what went wrong regarding the way companies responded to power cuts caused by the extreme weather conditions.

Ofgem concluded that some Distribution Network Operators (DNOs) did not adapt their resources or strategies quickly enough.

The regulator said it has asked DNOs to submit winter preparedness plans to provide assurance that all necessary steps have been taken.

The report also suggests limited monitoring of the lower voltage networks, hindered the DNOs from understanding the full scale and complexity of faults.

It also found that there were issues with the availability of phone lines, websites and how efficient customer enquiries were dealt with.

Ofgem added that it has made four recommendations to improve the handling of large call volumes, website traffic, reporting metrics of comms channels and customer service for call-backs.

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