Sunday, 27 July 2014

Power cut compensation increased to a minimum of £70 but not till April 2015

I know that with the temperature outside needing the air-con on, you wont really have the winder bad weather power cuts at the forefront of your mind.

People whose power is cut off for long spells during bad weather will be eligible for much higher compensation payments.

The regulator Ofgem is raising the minimum payment per customer from £27 to £70 for those who go at least 24 hours without power.

It follows the storms last Christmas when nearly one million people in southern England were cut off.
Of those, 16,000 were without power for more than two days.

Ofgem was particularly aggrieved by the efforts of the power supplier SSE and the power distribution firm UKPN (UK Power Networks) to restore power quickly enough to their customers.

The firms have already paid £4.7 million in compensation to their badly affected customers.

Now, after Ofgem pressure, the companies will donate a further £3.3 million to organisations like the Red Cross which help distressed customers during power cuts and bad weather.

"Ofgem's findings showed that while SSE and UKPN's southern arms were particularly badly hit by the storms, they could have done more to get customers reconnected faster and to keep them better updated on what was happening," said the regulator.

"The companies have recognised that they must improve their procedures for any future major interruption and Ofgem has today put the industry on notice that any repeat of last year's performance issues will trigger further action," it added.

As well as raising the minimum compensation payment to £70, the maximum amount that can be claimed by a customers is also going up - from £216 to £700.

The higher level of compensation payments come into effect from April 2015.

Ofgem said the point of raising the payouts was to give the firms an incentive to work faster at reconnecting customers.

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