Storm Arwen: Residents underpaid in compensation after being left without power

A number of residents who lost power after Storm Arwen say they've been underpaid compensation from Northern Powergrid.

More than 200,000 homes and businesses were affected by power cuts in November, with County Durham and Northumberland among the worst hit areas.

Dr Nigel Day's home in Upper Teesdale was one of them. His power shut off on Friday November 26, but when he got a cheque from Northern Powergrid before Christmas, he was left hundreds of pounds short.

Dr Day, who has neighbours in a similar situation, told ITV News Tyne Tees: "My plea to Northern Powergrid is you don't wait for people to come to you. You actually be proactive. You actually look at the database.

"You make a statement on the internet, or in public, to the press if necessary, to say we acknowledge that there have been issues with the compensation payments."

Households affected can claim £70 in compensation for every 12 hours they were left without supply, after 48 hours.

Northern Powergrid told us they're aware of a number of cases where additional compensation may be due, and they can reassure customers they're actively investigating them.

Director Paul Glendinning said: “Storm Arwen caused power cuts that affected over 200,000 homes and businesses. The vast majority of our customers were reconnected within the first day of the event and around 85% had their power restored within 48 hours. In line with industry guaranteed standards, compensation was due to around 30,000 customers.

“We’ve already issued around £8 million of cheques with the majority of payments made in around 10 working days and before the festive season for most of our customers.  We’ve also written to over 5,000 customers who we need additional information from to progress their compensation payments.

"We are aware of a number of cases in County Durham and Northumberland where additional compensation may be due and we can reassure customers we are actively investigating them. Where any additional compensation is due, we will of course ensure they - and any other customers who had the same power cut - are fully compensated."

Paul continued: “We have a dedicated Storm Arwen page which openly provides information about compensation, how it is calculated and guidance for what customers should do if they believe they are due more compensation. If any customers, after checking our guidance, believe they are due more than they’ve been paid, please contact us via the links on our Storm Arwen webpage so we can resolve it.

“We have ensured our approach to compensation recognises and reflects the extreme situation Storm Arwen caused for our customers and our network. Once all due compensation is paid it is expected to exceed around £10 million. We’re sorry for the difficulties our customers’ experienced. Our teams remain focused on resolving all compensation queries as a priority and we thank our customers for their patience.”