British public could face blackouts as coronavirus lockdown continues
Homes across the country could soon suffer from power cuts as the coronavirus lockdown continues. All energy suppliers have put all non-essential work on hold as they prepare for a potential shortage of engineers caused by social distancing, self-isolation and staff sickness.
The public has been assured by the National Grid that it can cope with the surge in demand as people stay indoors and work from home during the current outbreak. However, UK Power Networks has sent a letter seen by The Telegraph to vulnerable customers which states what to do in the event of a power cut. This includes keeping a torch, hat, gloves and blanket nearby as well as closing curtains and doors to trap heat inside their home. Vulnerable members of the public, including those who are elderly, have a disability or medical condition, or have children under the age of five, are told they should have a fully charged power bank in case their mobile phone battery dies and to use a landline if possible. UK Power Networks have also suggested that fridge and freezer doors should be kept closed to keep essential food and medicines cold. The fridge will keep food cold for four to six hours if the door is kept close, with the freezer lasting 15 to 24 hours. If an electrical engineer needs to enter a home to restore power, they should wear protective equipment, avoid touching surfaces and stay in a different room from people who are infected or self-isolating.
While all of the UK's energy suppliers have plans in place to minimise disruption of the power grid, with the reduction in staff there is a great risk of a power cut than normal. Many WFH workers could also be affected, creating an even greater strain on business than they are currently suffering. A UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) or possible a diesel generator to support the office server or key manufacturing equipment, could mitigate these risks. A backup power solution will at last the current crisis, providing protection from power cuts into the future.
You can read the Independent's article about this here.
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