I’m sorry to hear that you’ve been having issues with your electricity supply. Anytime that a power cut occurs, you can call 105 to speak to the local network operator.
You can report the situation to them or ask for information on what to do. You must complain to the energy distributor to claim compensation. This is not a complaint in relation to the energy supplier.
The compensation you can get for a power cut varies depending on whether it was planned or not, the cause of the issue, and how often interruptions to the supply have occurred.
Scheduled vs Unscheduled Power Cuts
If a power cut is scheduled to happen, for example when work is required on the network, or when the power must be cut for safety reasons, etc., then you should be given a two-day notice period.
In the case of planned works, the distributor has the responsibility to supply alternative methods for cooking and heating to those on the Priority Services Register, specifically applicable to vulnerable customers.
You are entitled to compensation for an unplanned power cut if it was the fault of either the electricity distributor or gas transporter.
How much can I expect?
You will be entitled to a payment of £30 in these circumstances. Power cuts may happen without notice, and as such, be classified as ‘unplanned’.
This can occur when there is a failure in the energy network through an accident, or due to storm damage, similar to the situation in which you have recently found yourself.
In these circumstances, you are entitled to £75 in compensation if the power cut lasted for longer than twelve hours. You are owed £35 for every additional twelve-hour period of the power cut and if more than five thousand homes have been affected. This is up to a maximum amount of £300.
If the loss of supply was caused by bad weather, you are entitled to £70 compensation and an additional £70 for every twelve-hour period afterwards, to a maximum of £700.
If a power cut happens at least four times per year, with the year running from 1st April to 31st March, then you will be entitled to another £75 in compensation.
How / When should I make this claim?
This claim must be made within one month if the power cut was planned, and three months if it was unplanned. You should be contacted if you have been affected.
If you find yourself in a similar position in the future, keeping fridges and freezers closed can help to preserve the contents for a longer period.
You can complain directly to the energy distributor if you are unhappy with decisions made in relation to compensation for loss of supply and escalate this to the energy ombudsman if the complaint is not resolved to your satisfaction.
Advice Direct Scotland run energyadvice.scot, the Scottish Government-supported energy advice service. Scottish citizens can get free, practical, and impartial advice and information on a range of energy-related matters, including understanding energy bills and meters; what to do if there are issues with an energy supply; as well as sources of additional support that are available. You can contact specialist energy advisers by calling 0808 196 8660 (Monday – Friday, 9am-5pm) or by visiting www.energyadvice.scot.
I hope this helps and you get the situation resolved.