Help for blackout victims

PUBLISHED: 18:34 19 August 2009 | UPDATED: 17:04 25 August 2010

VICTIMS of the worst power cut to hit the borough in 30 years are to get support from the council to help ensure they get a £50 goodwill gesture .

VICTIMS of the worst power cut to hit the borough in 30 years are to get support from the council to help ensure they get a £50 'goodwill gesture'.

Bexley council are in discussions with EDF Energy to make sure as many households as possible get £50 following a blackout from July 21 for up to three days, affecting nearly 100,000 homes.

EDF wants exemption from compensation liability, claiming that saboteurs broke through heavy padlocked doors to access the Dartford cable bridge, making the incident out of its control. Regulator Ofgem is to conduct its own investigation.

The energy firm has agreed to pay a £50 goodwill gesture to customers who were left without power for 24 hours or more.

Leader of Bexley council, Teresa O'Neill, said: "We are talking to EDF about the best way to assist those who would like help completing the necessary paperwork."

Slade Green residents were among the worst affected as power to many tower blocks was cut off, leaving lifts dead and causing water pumps to fail.

EDF has urged relatives and friends of vulnerable people, who may not be able to contact the company directly, to ensure they are put on a priority list for emergency generators, should another blackout hit the borough.

Around a quarter of those who recently received letters from the energy company are expected to be eligible for £50.

Residents can make a claim by sending their name and full address to: EDF Energy Networks, Dartford Payments Team, Fore Hamlet, Ipswich, IP3 8AA.

Claimants have until the end of November to make their submission.

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