Significant damage caused to SHEPD's network
Strong winds and lightning from Caithness to Campbeltown have affected power lines. Since midnight, engineers have restored supply to 6,000 customers and are currently working to bring power back to a further 6,000.
Ahead of the storm more than 400 engineers and support staff were mobilised to key locations to minimise disruption and inconvenience to customers. Engineers are at every fault location and making good progress in reconnecting overhead lines brought down by airborne debris and lightning. Besides the strong winds, flooding and road closures in some areas are making it difficult for our teams to get to fault locations.
Our forecasts suggest that winds of up to 80 mph will continue to batter the Western Isles, Skye, North West Highlands, Tayside, Aberdeenshire and Moray until early afternoon. From around midday Shetland and Orkney are likely to face gusts of more than 100 mph.
Customer service staff have contacted 700 people on SHEPD’s Priority Service Register to check on their wellbeing in case they need additional help during a power cut. Welfare vans have also been dispatched to areas worst affected by Storm Gertrude. We are also working with our partner agencies, the British Red Cross, Salvation Army and a number of local hotels to ensure that those without power can get food and warmth.
SHEPD is urging members of the public not to approach fallen or damaged power lines, which may still be live.
In anticipation of possible disruption to power supplies, we would encourage our customers to be prepared. This can done by:
- Saving our number – 0800 300 999 - to your phone and to contact us if your power goes off, or if you see any damage to our network.
- Downloading our Power Track app to give you details of power cuts and restoration times.
- Going to our Ready For Winter pages where there is a wealth of advice and information on how to prepare for a possible loss of power.
- Follow us on Facebook (Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution) and Twitter (@hydroPD)
Dale Cargill, Director of SHEPD, said: “If anybody has concerns for their own safety, or the welfare of their friends or family before or during the storm we would urge them to contact us and we’ll do everything we can to help them.”