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Posted By: uksparky Full marks to United Utilities - 01/09/05 01:30 AM
Up in Cumbria we were smashed to bits and flooded out last night. I woke up at 6.30 this morning to find the power was off. I had been awake on and off all night because of the wind which reached a frightening pitch around 12.30am and continued with 80mph gusts until about 7.30am.

Two trees next to us fell at just after 1.00am, and a barn tin roof took flight at the same time.

The power stayed valliantly available until 5.53am!!

What's more important though, is that we were back on by 4.00pm today - even given the huge tasks in front of UU they have managed to restore power to 70% of those affected.

They have my thanks - and my vote! [Linked Image]
Posted By: Trumpy Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/09/05 09:18 AM
That's a good turn-around as far as Over-head Faults go.
And United Utilities did very well to have the supply back on in such a short time.
Only thing that bothers me John, is all the chest-beating that will happen at the next Utilities meeting, by the Management telling others how they got the power back on so quick.
No mention of the guys that were actually out in the weather.
Of course, that guy "managed" it all.
Sorry, John, just my take on things.
Posted By: aland Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/09/05 10:17 AM
John, Good to hear that you came through virtualy unscathed, saw the footage on TV from Carlisle and surrounding areas and immediately thought of you and your family. Its certainly a good response from UU, it looks as though they have a job on their hands Good luck to everyone involved.
Posted By: C-H Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/09/05 01:38 PM
Sounds like a very unpleasant night indeed. Good to hear that the trees didn't hit your house. I've never been near 80 mph winds and sure don't want to!

The storm that came from the British Isles and hit the southwestern part of Scandinavia took out all railways and quite a lot of roads and power lines. The Swedish utilites are today trying to get power back to some 400' homes. The people at the other end of the line are busy restarting the nuclear power plants...
Posted By: uksparky Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/10/05 12:42 AM
Guys, thanks for your concern and comments.

I have had a stream of calls for Carlisle for work once the city 'reopens'. It has been hit quite badly really.

Unfortunately, as I write this, the weather has again turned nasty. I have a friend with a weather station who phoned earlier to say that his anenometer was reading gusts of 62mph again...and rising. I drove to Kendal tonight to collect some cable and the rain was phenomenal! Couldn't see a damn thing on the A6/M6 over Shap and the roads were simply awash. I gather that the water level in areas of Carlisle is again rising tonight [Linked Image]

Done 3 farms this weekend; overheads and lighting torn down by flying debris and wind mainly. Tomorrow brings a house where a section of the roof/upstairs was badly damaged by a tree falling on it. Owners got back today to find power available but unsafe. Followed by connecting up a sewage treatment plant that is currently still under water...

Great start to the year for some [Linked Image]. Can't even be happy to get the work when you see the bloody mess some people lives are in after all this. Visited a house y'day where all the kids new toys were wrecked and outside for dumping along with half the family stuff. His bedroom was on the downstairs floor because he is severely handicapped. He's only seven. After a look around and an insurance form fill-in I gave him my daughter's Game-boy ( which I happened to have in the car! ), and wept on the way home [Linked Image]

Posted By: pauluk Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/10/05 12:04 PM

Sounds as though you've had it pretty rough up there, but full marks to the PoCo for getting things restored as quickly as possible.

Having had a taste of working on phone line repair, I certainly don't envy the power guys who turn out in conditions like this and who are under that much more pressure -- People are generally more worried about getting the juice back on quickly than having their phone back in operation.
Posted By: uksparky Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/11/05 01:20 AM
Yes Paul, you're right on both counts!

People get pretty narked about having no power. I listened to one old geezer in the filling-station this afternoon; he was complaining that he had no power still and it was "outrageous...we pay our in an area where power should never go off...blah, blah".

I got annoyed ( I'm afraid ) and gave him a piece of my mind - asking if he'd fancy swinging off a pole in this weather ( it's still v. wet and windy ) trying to hook up power in some godforsaken out-of-the-way location just so some ingrate can watch Coronation Street.

I wasn't proud of myself - but it really p****s me off when some of us work round the clock in all conditions and listen to this tripe [Linked Image]

Ok - rant over. [Linked Image]
Posted By: C-H Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/11/05 07:23 AM
A justified rant, UKsparky. We couldn't build a society designed to cope with all potential disasters even if we tried. What would power cost if it didn't go out when you're hit by a hurricane?
Posted By: Trumpy Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/11/05 09:34 AM
Hey John,
From what you've just said, my little rant is made a micro-rant.
Hope that everything is Ok up there, I have the greatest sympathy for anyone that is caught in nasty weather patterns.
We are having floods here too, not actually here in the South Island, but in the southern tip of the North Island of New Zealand.
It's a waste of time having seasons here, it seems like winter all year round.
Posted By: SimonUK Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/11/05 11:11 AM
Just watched the latest forecast for tonight.
Makes for grim viewing. [Linked Image]

100mph winds and torrential rain followed by snow. [Linked Image]

We have no roof tiles just now as the council has decided to retile the roof despite the weather reports. [Linked Image]

I'm getting the genny set up just in case.

The winds are picking up just now 1100HRS and I start work delivering Chinese meals in an area very prone to flooding and fallen trees at 1700HRS and finish at about midnight OHHHH BOY!!!! (Thank god I have a Chevy Blazer 6.2 diesel 4X4) [Linked Image]

I really feel for the poor souls that have to rebuild their lives when there is worse weather heading this way.

Posted By: aland Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/11/05 07:00 PM
Simon, where do thes people keep their brain? Who the b------ hell organises a roof to be retiled in the muddle of this lot. For gods sake it must be a health and safety hazard never mind anything else. Hope you come through OK my friend. I will be watvching the weather with interest this evening.
Posted By: pauluk Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/11/05 07:52 PM
Who the b------ hell organises a roof to be retiled in the muddle of this lot
the council

Says it all really! I think one of the qualifications for some council jobs is a lack of common sense. [Linked Image]

Good luck to all of you up there getting things back to normal.
Posted By: uksparky Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/12/05 01:25 AM
Well as I type this the rain lasheth and the wind galeth - again...

Just come in from a house that got wet - old dear whos power was put on without anyone checking the state of things, she couldn't understand why no sockets or heaters worked downstairs. I traced the fault to a shed adjoining the house - everything soaked through. It was freezing - no heat in the house...all electric. Being infirm she lives downstairs so has just "put up with it". Thank Heaven for earth leakage protection...

Made a cup of tea for us both [Linked Image] and sat chatting for a while in front of the fan heater. I said I'd send a bill in a week or two - but she pressed a £20 into my hand as I left "for being a gentleman". People like that are the salt of the earth - a far-cry from the orifice I met yesterday. I will, of course, quietly knock the £20 off the bill... What a wonderful ol' lady [Linked Image]

Simon - methinks I could not afford a Chinese takeaway delivered by you!! How many gallons to the mile does that thing do? [Linked Image] Can't believe your roof saga - Geez. Hope you fair well through the night.

Hope all goes well in NZ Trumps - didn't realise you were suffering over there as well. What with the Tsunami, and the weather in the States as well - makes you wonder what the hell is going on!? I wonder too, how long property insurance will remain available to the average earner???
Posted By: Trumpy Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/12/05 01:28 PM
Great to see that you helped that elderly lady out, mate, have one shouted to you, from me!. [Linked Image]
In situations like you've just explained, people very rarely help the elderly and infirm, because the people themselves think they aren't in a position to complain and usually don't either out of sheer pride or the belief that someone is in greater need.
Kudos John!. [Linked Image]
Posted By: pauluk Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/12/05 03:00 PM
Yep, they're the sort of people who restore one's faith in human nature, aren't they? [Linked Image]
Posted By: C-H Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/13/05 07:43 AM
makes you wonder what the hell is going on!?

So do the utilities. In Sweden, they have restored power to all but a 100' homes and expect to have all homes lit up sometime next week. The engineers are scratching their heads, as the powerlines are sized for a maximum wind of 35 m/s (80 mph) but the winds in the storm exceeded 40 m/s (90 mph). Question is if worse is to come in the future?
Posted By: ianh Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/14/05 02:52 PM
We got properly hammered by the winds last weekend - we had 600+ people off supply and some only got their power back on yesterday!

We have all been out working 15+ hour days, and we will probably be out making the final repairs for the next 3 or 4 days.

Fingers crossed that we don't see winds like that again for a while!

Posted By: uksparky Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 01/15/05 12:33 AM
Indeed Ian. It is interesting to note that UU had over 800 people working on the repairs; drafted from all over the UK.

Welcome to the board, by the way! [Linked Image]
Posted By: SimonUK Re: Full marks to United Utilities - 02/04/05 07:00 PM
Been off the net for a while as i've started a new job.

Thankfully we didn't suffer any damage here but the family home up north got a hammering.

My great aunt whose in her seventies had to endure a night with waves breaking against the house and sections of the roof being blown away. The sea has never been closer than 20 feet from the house even at the highest of tides. The wall at the shore is gone along with all the sheds which had a lot of family heirlooms in them. There is now a steep drop from the house to the shore.

It was less dangerous for her to stay in the house as the wind was so strong you could not walk in it and the falling trees were lethal.

To say she was terrified is an understatement.

UKSparky the chevy is actually cheaper to run than my cavalier was.

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