Night without power for homes hit by Storm Ottoon February 18, 2023 at 10:27 am

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About 2,500 properties were still without supplies on Saturday morning following Friday’s storm.

Tree on carImage source, PA Media

Thousands of people in northern Scotland spent a night without power in the aftermath of Storm Otto.

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) said its engineers reconnected more than 41,000 customers but at 10:00 on Saturday about 2,500 were still without supply.

It expects to restore power to most people throughout the day, without everyone reconnected by Sunday evening.

Mobile food vans are serving hot food and drinks in the main affected areas.

The power cuts are mainly concentrated in Aberdeenshire and include parts of Oyne, Banff, Methlick, Insch, Turriff, Belhelvie, Kennethmont, Gartly, Wardhouse, Huntly, Ellon, Glemuick, Fyvie and surrounding areas.

Storm Otto, the first named storm of the season, was marked by high winds which brought down trees and damaged a number of vehicles and buildings.

Wind speeds in excess of 80mph were recorded in a number of places while at Cairngorm mountain the gusts reached 120mph.

Trains, buses and ferry services were delayed or cancelled, with trees blocking many routes in Aberdeenshire.

SSEN Distribution said it had brought in extra workers to deal with the power cuts and a total of 750 staff were responding to the effects of the storm

Mark Rough, operations director at SSEN Distribution, said there was widespread damage to the electricity network.

“Our teams have made further progress late last night and early this morning restoring the remaining customers still off supply following the impacts of Storm Otto.

“Having now assessed the majority of those faults that are still to be repaired, we are confident the majority of customers impacted will be restored today and expect everyone still off supply to be restored by tomorrow evening at the latest.

“We continue to work closely with our resilience partners to support our customers as required, particularly those on our priority services register, and would encourage anyone who may need additional support to contact our dedicated teams on the power cut helpline, 105.”

A Met Office yellow warning for snow and ice in force for some parts of Scotland, mainly on higher routes in the north, expired at 09:00 on Saturday.

Kenny McKenzie

Kenny McKenzie, told BBC Scotland that a tree was blown down outside his house in Mintlaw, Aberdeenshire and he lost power at 07:45 on Friday.

“With no word, no internet, no mobile phone, everything stopped working,” he said.

“One of our neighbours has a gas cooker so she came round with a flask so that we could have our coffee, which was great first thing in the morning.

“Hopefully we’re going down to Fraserburgh because the power’s on there so we’ll wait and see if there’s a bus, seemingly the buses have stopped as well though nobody seems to know.”

Any customer who has been off supply for longer than 12 hours is entitled to claim up to £30 for food, per day. Customers are advised to keep receipts.

More than 100 schools in Aberdeenshire were closed on Friday, with almost 50 in Highland and a handful in Moray also affected.

school roof missing

Image source, Angus Council

Angus Council said the Burnside Primary School building was not safe for children and staff, after the roof was seriously damaged.

Children from P1-7 will be provided with remote learning from 22 February when the school returns from the mid-term break.

North East Scotland College in Aberdeen also closed following damage to the roof of its city campus.

BBC Scotland Weather said gusts of 83mph had been recorded in Inverbervie, Aberdeenshire, and 80mph in Lossiemouth, Moray, and at Tain in the Highlands.

The storm was named Otto by the Danish Met Office. The UK Met Office has adopted the same name.

It is the first named storm to hit the UK since Franklin last February.

The Met Office’s season for named storms runs from September to September, and the names are given to raise awareness of severe weather.

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