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Home   Maidstone   News   Article

Hundreds of homes without power days after floods and storms brought down power cables, with Yalding badly hit

28 December 2013
by KentOnline reporter
Angry families are still battling to heat their homes and cook properly days after they lost power in the floods.
 
Kent has fared the worst in the South East - with 663 homes still disconnected from the grid five days after losing power in Monday's storms.
 
In neighbouring Sussex, just 326 homes are still suffering blackouts, while in Surrey - one of the worst affected counties - just 97 homes are still hit, according to distributor UK Power Networks.
 
David Cameron meets Yalding villagers during a visit to flood-hit sites

David Cameron meets Yalding villagers during a visit to flood-hit sites

 
Seven areas in Kent still face a flood warning, meaning flooding is expected and immediate action is required.
 
But UK Power Networks has come under fire for the time it's taken to restore power to the remaining homes.

Niamh Arnett, of the firm, said today: "Currently we're working to restore power supplies to 663 homes in Kent.

"We restored power to hundreds of homes yesterday, so we've made progress, but our work won't stop until we have everyone restored.

"We're aiming to restore all supplies by the close of play tomorrow."

The junction of Barker Road and Tonbridge Road

The flooded junction of Barker Road and Tonbridge Road in Maidstone

She said the flooding was a major incident that caused severe damage to the power lines across the South East.

At one point 300,000 customers were without power.

The spokesman added: "We've now got lots of tiny clusters of properties that need restoring and each one needs a repair crew at each site, getting round to each one takes time. It's taking longer than we'd like, but we are doing our best."

What do you think? Join the debate by adding your comments below"After this we will review the incident and see if we can do any better, we're doing our utmost to get everyone back on supply, all our efforts are focused on getting people back on supply and delivering information." 

The news comes a day after Prime minister David Cameron met families and business owners hit by the floods in Kent.
 
Mr Cameron toured Yalding, and met those most severely hit by the storms.
 
Some angry villagers hit out, after failing to get a response from authorities handling the crisis. 
 
David Cameron visits Yalding today

David Cameron visits Yalding today

 
Erica Olivares confronted the Prime Minister as he visited the village seriously affected by the latest storms.

She told David Cameron her local council had done nothing to help villagers in Yalding.

The PM tried to defuse the confrontation by promising to contact the council himself and to visit her property. 


 Related story

Prime minister David Cameron visits flood-hit Yalding in wake of storm


But she later said villagers had been given no food or drink over Christmas as the worst of the storms caused damage. 
 
The prime minister praised the excellent work of emergency and rescue workers who had given up their Christmases to tackle the flooding.
 
It comes as thousands of families could be set for compensation... as floods and power cuts still cause devastation to many homes and businesses.
 
Not quite the festive Christmas tree... Picture George Haswell

Not quite the festive Christmas tree... Picture: George Haswell

 
UK Power Networks announced compensation could be offered to some of the thousands affected by the power cuts across Kent.

An announcement said: "Customers who are eligible for payments will be notified by letter over the next few days.

Why Yalding's so badly hit by the floods

Why Yalding's so badly hit by the floods

"As a gesture of goodwill UK Power Networks has decided to boost the industry standard payment from £27 to £75 for customers who are without power for 48-60 hours including Christmas Day, and additional payments will be made to any customers off supply for longer."

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