Report by Kris Jepson
A major incident has been declared across parts of County Durham and Darlington following the aftermath of Storm Arwen.
Thousands of people are still without power six days after one of the worst storms in the last decade hit the region, and now steps have been taken to provide additional support to those who are affected.
The decision has been taken because the Northern Powergrid is not yet in a position to confirm when supplies will be given to all properties across the region.
The areas that are affected are most of Teesdale and Weardale as well as surrounding areas of Durham.
Declaring a major incident means that the partner organisations of the Local Resilience Forum have escalated the issue in order to provide additional support to those who are affected by a loss of power.
John Hewitt, Chair of the Strategic Co-ordination Group (SCG) for County Durham and Darlington says:
“We are aware that many people have been left without power for almost a week now and we are working closely with Northern Powergrid to ensure that supplies are restored as soon as possible, particularly those who are vulnerable.
“In the meantime, our priority is ensuring that support is available to everyone who needs it and we have teams from all organisations out in communities offering a range of advice and practical support.
Important contact information:
Many community venues and voluntary groups are also offering support, a list can be found at here.
Anyone who is aware of an older or vulnerable person who needs help, can contact DCC's customer services team on 03000 26 0000. This number is available 24 hours, with out-of-hours emergency support available through our Care Connect team.
To report a loss of power visit the Northern Power Grid website.
If someone is without power and is vulnerable, call 105. Additional contact numbers are available for residents with a hearing or speech impairment. Full details are available here.