Expert says we should ‘get used to blackouts’ and shows how to deal with them

(FILES) A utility pole carrying electricity for the National Grid is seen in east London in this August 16, 2019 file photo. - Britain announced plans on April 6, 2022 to create a new British energy management watchdog to secure supply amid the negative fallout from the Ukraine war and to nationalize part of utility giant National Grid. The UK government has agreed to buy the London-listed company's electricity system operator (ESO) regulatory arm for an undisclosed amount, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy said in a statement. (Photo by Daniel LEAL/AFP) (Photo by DANIEL LEAL/AFP via Getty Images)

Brits should ‘plan meals and everything else around the hours of a blackout’ (Picture: Getty)

Brits should get used to winter power cuts and make sure they are prepared to live in the dark on the coldest days, an expert has said.

There are fears people could be asked to turn off their electricity voluntarily over the next few days as supplies are tight today and Sunday.

This could “certainly” be something the country should expect in future winters, HybridTec’s John Burns told

He said: “The coldest days are the most likely times that a blackout could occur, so it’s important to prepare for and adapt to potential blackouts in the future.”

The commercial manager at the utility training company, who specializes in energy management, said families should “plan everything around the hours of a possible blackout”.

This includes eating meals when there is no power outage and keeping a full supply of candles, matches and lighters.

He said: “It’s important to keep torches in every room and if you have a wood stove, stock up on plenty of wood and charcoal.

“Keep regular contact with vulnerable family members or neighbors and eat well.”

During the energy crisis, the family sits at the table, lit by candles. Because of heating problems during the power outage, everyone wears warm clothes. They eat dry biscuits and warm their hands by the candle flame. Canon R5

Families should make sure they stock candles, matches and lighters (Picture: Getty)

John explained that all future outages will be planned and announced in advance.

He predicts people will be asked to avoid high-traffic items during peak hours – between 4pm and 7pm.

But he also warned of very long periods of snow that could potentially trigger random power outages.

“Snow is usually followed by a period of high pressure, which means there’s no wind, so wind farms wouldn’t produce enough energy,” he said.

The UK last faced serious energy problems 49 years ago.

The country’s then-conservative government introduced a three-day week in 1973 to “limit commercial electricity use.”

Essential businesses such as supermarkets and hospitals were exempt from the rules. Many pubs closed and those that stayed open had to rely on candlelight.

The policy was abolished in 1974.

It comes after Brits braced themselves for power cuts in late November before a last-minute dodge on the situation.

A warning has been issued that temperatures could reach “nearly minus 10C” in rural parts of the UK on Thursday.

People on the lowest incomes in hundreds of affected postcode areas will receive a £25 cold-weather payment due to freezing conditions.

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Justin Scacco

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