By Susanna Twidale
LONDON – Britain’s energy regulator said on Friday it was launching a review into networks’ response to Storm Arwen which left tens of thousands of people without power last week due to strong winds across many parts of the country.
Regulator Ofgem said 10,500 homes are still without power in parts of Scotland and the north of England after gusts of up to 100 miles per hour (160 kph) destroyed power lines and freezing conditions caused faults.
The review is aimed at offering better support to customers in case of extreme weather in the future, Ofgem said in a statement.
A 700 pound ($929) cap on compensation for customers has been removed, with customers now able to receive up to 140 pounds a day in compensation for every day they have been without power.
“The absolute priority remains getting people back on power as quickly as possible, but for those who have not had power because of Storm Arwen, there are ways for customers to claim compensation by contacting their network company,” Ofgem Chief Executive Jonathan Brearley said.
Britain’s Energy Network Association (ENA), which represents the UK’s electricity and gas network companies, said some of the damage to infrastructure caused by the storm had been catastrophic.
“Engineers have been battling with 4,500 individual sites of damage,” it said in a statement earlier this week.
The ENA said by Dec.1 some 97% of affected homes had been reconnected, with those taking longer to restore in some of the worst hit and most remote locations.
($1 = 0.7535 pounds)