A PLAN for three-hour blackouts has been revealed in government documents – here’s the exact time your home would be affected.
The Electricity Supply Emergency Code (ESEC) gives the PM sweeping powers to introduce rolling blackouts across the UK to conserve electricity.
A government plan for power cuts has been released – find out how your home would be affected
Find your ‘load block’ on this and the following graphs to see when you’re home is expected to lose electricity
A doomsday scenario could see households, businesses and vital infrastructure left without electricity indefinitely
The plan comes off the back of advice from the National Grid that power cuts could become a regular occurrence during cold January and February nights if electricity generators run out of gas.
The guide is split into several stages with the first being direct appeals to the public to reduce their power consumption.
The second is slapping restrictions on companies’ electricity usage by requiring them to drop their consumption by a certain percent.
The final and most harrowing is dubbed “rota disconnections” which effectively are rolling blackouts for homes across the UK.
Power in the UK is provided by a handful of suppliers who divide their distribution into 18 “load blocks”, which work like postcodes.
Each block is assigned a letter between A and U. Letters F, I and O are not used.
You’ll be able to find yours on your electricity bill. If not, get in touch with your electricity provider to find out.
For example, looking at Level 1, if you live in block A, you would have a power cut on Monday 12:30am to 3:30am, Wednesday 3:30pm to 6:30pm and on Sunday 12:30am to 3:30am.
These blackouts will be based on where you live and how power is supplied to your home, which means your neighbours might not experience a blackout while you do.
Households belonging to each “load block” are scattered across the country, so one area isn’t in complete blackout at the same time.
Blackouts could occur every day of the week in eight three-hour slots, with the first starting at 00:30 to 3:30am and ending with 9:30pm to 12.30am, according to the report.
Power cuts will be based on a 18 levels of severity which differ depending on the availability of gas supplies.
The first would see rolling blackouts three to four times a week, either at the start or the end of the week.
Level two would see power cuts occur six times a week and level three will disrupt electricity flows to households for 27 hours a week.
Level nine is the point at which homes face spending more time without power than with while the most feared scenario is a “total shutdown” of power supply indefinitely.
Certain “protected sites” like hospitals, food manufacturers, oil refineries, some ports, financial services, essential water and sewerage installations, major airports and digital and telecommunication services will dodge the worst of it – but not for long.
Blackouts, dubbed ‘rota disconnections’, could come into play during the cold winter months
Power cuts have been divided into 18 levels of varying severity
Vladimir Putin has threatened to end gas supplies to Europe this winter
They may be forced to reduce consumption in the worst of circumstances, while priority is given to the “maintenance of life” and to “minimising the risk of disasters”.
Meanwhile, the BBC has prepared secret scripts for use during blackouts this winter.
The scripts set out how the broadcaster would attempt to reassure the public should there be a “major loss of power”.
Brits would be advised to use car radios or battery-powered receivers to listen to emergency broadcasts on FM and long-wave frequencies usually reserved for Radio 2 and Radio 4, according to a Guardian report.
One draft script, seen by the paper, warns a blackout could last for as long as two days, with hospitals and police put under “extreme pressure”.
Russia has threatened to turn off gas supplies to Europe this winter in retaliation over its support for Ukraine.
Moscow has already been accused of sabotaging the Nord Stream pipelines with “pig” drones packed with explosives, which suffered catastrophic damage earlier this month.
Though the UK does not rely on imported gas from Russia, it will be hit by a supply shortage in Europe, which is where it sources most of its gas and electricity.
A Government spokesperson said: “The UK has a secure and diverse energy system.
“To strengthen this position further, we have put plans in place to secure supply and National Grid, working alongside energy suppliers and Ofgem, will launch a voluntary service to reward users who reduce demand at peak times.’
“But Britons are already preparing for the worst case scenario by stocking-up on portable generators and torches in addition to winter clothing, thermal underwear and candles, according to industry reports.”
The new plan comes as National Grid bosses warned of rolling blackouts in January and February
Ring your electricity provider if you’re unsure of what your ‘load block’ is
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