Nuclear plant and 60,000 customers still off supply as DNOs repair St Jude storm damage

Dungeness B nuclear power station and more than 60,000 homes and businesses were still without power on Tuesday morning, in the aftermath of storm St Jude.

Distribution network operators (DNOs) restored supply to around nine out of ten affected customers within 24 hours of the storm breaking.

The number of those hit with power cuts climbed to an estimated three quarters of a million on Monday, after St Jude downed power lines across the southern UK.

EDF Energy also shut down Dungeness B’s two nuclear reactors after the power lines to the plant were damaged. The units are expected to be back up in the next couple of days.

UK Power Networks saw the heaviest damage, cutting off around 620,000 customers. On Tuesday, an estimated 48,000 properties in the East of England and 9,600 in the South East were still off supply.

A spokesperson for UKPN said it was deploying six times the usual number of engineers on duty, including some borrowed from other DNOs, to finish repairs to the network.

Southern Electric Power Distribution had reinstated supplies to more than 100,000 customers by Monday evening, leaving some 10,000 in rural areas cut off overnight. Of these, 4,000 had electricity again by mid-morning.

SEPD head of engineering Alan Broadbent explained some inaccessible parts of the network had to be patrolled on foot, before replacing broken wooden poles in a process that can take up to four hours. He was “pleased with the team’s progress” by yesterday evening.

Some 5,000 properties served by Western Power Distribution’s network in the South West were back online after disruptions.