How to prepare for bad weather

How to prepare for bad weather

By: Shell Energy

20 Feb 2023

Being winter ready means being prepared for the unexpected. Although it’s not a common occurrence, our electricity supplies can be interrupted for all sorts of reasons and it’s a good idea to make sure you’re ready just in case.

Whether you’re wondering how best to prepare for bad weather, what to do if you have a power cut or who to contact in the event of one, we’ve put together a winter-ready guide that’s designed to give you peace of mind.

We understand that the prospect of bad weather or a power cut can be scary. Being better prepared not only gives you reassurance but also enables you to look out for loved ones and people in your community.

When thinking about getting winter ready, it can be helpful to keep these three steps in mind:

Prepare: Make a plan for what you’ll do if you have a power cut or smell gas

Care: Check in with people in your community who might need extra help

Share: Share this information so that your friends and family can prepare too

Are you winter ready? Prepare, Care, Share

Simple ways to stay winter ready

Plan ahead with these simple suggestions and and feel better prepared for bad weather:

  • Keep a torch handy – it’s much safer than using candles
  • Get a battery-powered or a solar powered radio (useful for keeping up to date with relevant local news)
  • Keep a blanket and warm clothing handy, and fill a vacuum flask or hot water bottle to help you keep warm
  • Make sure you have a few items of food and drink handy that don’t require electricity to prepare
  • Keep your mobile phone and laptop fully charged
  • Check your network operator's website or social media channels for updates

Who should I contact if I have a power cut?

In the event of a power cut, if you need to speak to someone your first step should be getting in touch with your distribution network operator. A distribution network operator, known as a DNO, is the organisation that manages the power lines and infrastructure that connect your property to the main grid.

Contacting your distribution network operator (DNO)

To get in touch with your DNO, simply use the DNO website to find out who your operator is by entering your postcode.

What to do if you have a power cut

Along with contacting your DNO, it’s a good idea to follow the steps below if the power goes out at your property.

Preparing for a power cut:

  • Switch off all appliances, but leave one light switch on so you know when power returns
  • Bookmark on your mobile phone.This is a free service that you can call to report, as well as get updates on, power cuts in your local area

During a power cut:

  • Keep a torch handy in case you are without power during the night
  • Have warm clothes and blankets accessible in case you experience a prolonged power cut
  • Check in on your neighbours, friends and family to make sure they're okay

It’s also worth keeping in mind that you might not have mobile phone service or it may be very limited.

Find out more about what to do in a power cut

Get more information about what to do in a gas or electricity emergency

Could you benefit from more support?

Our Priority Services Register (PSR) helps us support customers with additional needs. This includes people with disabilities, people who are dependent on medical equipment, and those with extra communication needs.

Joining the register helps us prioritise getting to you first in an emergency. It also means we’ll be able to let you know in advance about any planned power cuts.

If you need extra support, simply fill out the priority services application form.

For more expert advice on what to do if you experience a power cut, as well as further information about network operators, visit the Energy Networks Assocation's dedicated help page.