UK power cut – why was there a power outage? Latest news after National Grid failure sends London and the country into darkness

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PARTS of UK experienced a power outage for hours after a problem with National Grid, leaving Brits in the dark.
Why was there a power cut in your area? Here’s what we know.

Parts of the country have gone completely dark
Parts of the country have gone completely dark
Alamy

Why was the power outage?

TheNational Grid said power had been “restored” after two generators failed, but energy watchdog Ofgem has called for an “urgent detailed report” so it can investigate.

A spokesman said: “Ofgem has asked for an urgent detailed report from National Grid so we can understand what went wrong and decide what further steps need to be taken. This could include enforcement action.”

It was the first major outage since 500,000 lost power in London in 2003.

Western Power Distrubiton, which serves the Midlands, South West and Wales, said 500,000 people were affected.

More than 100,000 homes in Devon were left without power, and around 300,000 UK Power Networks customers were affected in London and the South East.

Northern Powergrid, which serves Yorkshire and the North East, said 110,000 customers lost power while Electricity North West said a further 26,000 customers were affected.

Thousands of desperate passengers were stranded on trains for more than six hours in the dark last night as a UK-wide power cut wreaked havoc on trains, Tubes and roads.

A million people across the UK were plunged into darkness after two National Grid generators spectacularly failed, with large parts of London, the South East, Liverpool, Glasgow, Wales, Gloucestershire and Manchester all without power.

What are the regional distribution network operators?

Yorkshire, North East England

  • Northern Powergrid – go here for live outages.

London, South East England, Eastern England

  • UK Power Networks – go here for live outages.

South West England, West Midlands, East Midlands, South Wales

  • Western Power Distribution – go here for live outages.

Southern England, North Scotland

  • Scottish & Southern Electricity Networks – go here for live outages.

North West England

  • Electricity North West – go here for live outages.

North Wales, Merseyside, Cheshire, South Scotland

  • SP Energy Networks – go here for live outages.

Crowds in Clapham Junction
@JoeWelstead

Crowds in Clapham Junction were plunged into darkness as the power cut hit at rush hour[/caption]

Passengers were forced to use phone torches as the lights went out at Clapham today
@AislingJane_

Passengers were forced to use phone torches as the lights went out at Clapham today[/caption]

Huge crowds at Victoria station as the power cut shuts down parts of the tube
Raj Patel – Clickshot Memories

Huge crowds at Victoria station as the power cut shuts down parts of the tube[/caption]

How can I see if my area is affected?

The best way to check to see if your area is affected is to check your local network operator’s website.

If you are unsure about who your network operator is go here.


There are delays to trains and the Tube
Raj Patel – Clickshot Memories

There are delays to trains and the Tube[/caption]

A motorist gets out of his car to direct traffic after a power cut in the area leads to traffic lights failing on the A167 Durham Road, in Low Fell, Gateshead
North News and Pictures

A motorist gets out of his car to direct traffic after a power cut in the area leads to traffic lights failing on the A167 Durham Road, in Low Fell, Gateshead[/caption]

There are huge queues at St Pancras
@rosiehunnam

There are huge queues at St Pancras[/caption]

Traffic lights have gone down in Northcote Road near Clapham Junction in London
PA:Press Association

Traffic lights have gone down in Northcote Road near Clapham Junction in London[/caption]

Commuters walk on the tracks after getting off stranded trains
@GFEllsworth

Commuters walk on the tracks after getting off stranded trains[/caption]

How to claim compensation for unplanned power cuts

IF you’ve been affected by a power cut then you could be owed cash. Here’s all the details.

If the power cut was caused by bad weather, you should be paid compensation without having to claim.

But if you don’t receive the compensation you can claim it yourself by contacting your network provider.

How much can you get?

The amount of compensation you can get depends on how many homes were affected by the power cut, how long it last and whether it was caused by bad weather.

You can contact your network operator to find out how many homes were affected.

Compensation ranges from £35 up to a maximum of £700.

How to claim

You should be paid within 10 days of claiming, or if the power cut was caused by bad weather, you should be paid as soon as is reasonable.

If you’re not paid within these timescales, you can get a further payment of £30 for late payment.

If the network tells you that you’re not eligible for compensation, and you disagree, you should complain directly to it. Use its complaints procedure, which will be on its website.

If you’re not satisfied with the response to your complaint, you can complain to the energy ombudsman.

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