SSEN works with local fire service to help its Wessex customers get ready for winter

Two men in front of fire engine

SSEN’s Customer and Community Advisor for Wessex, Joe Cherrett with Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service Watch Manager Matt Kiddell

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) has joined forces with Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to spread the word on free additional services for customers across Wessex.

The free SSEN Winter Packs contain information on its Priority Services Register (PSR), handy contact numbers to report power cuts or to ask for advice, pens, a torch, along with a fridge magnet with a reminder of the free-to-call emergency number, and it’s all contained in a handy re-useable and environmentally friendly cotton bag. The packs also supply information on both water utilities local to the area – Wessex Water and Bournemouth Water – so customers can find out more about the assistance available to them in their community, and will be distributed by Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue on their home visits.

The packs have been designed to help residents and communities get ready for the potential of poor weather over the winter months, by providing recipients with an easy update on what they can do to prepare, the contact numbers they need to know and how SSEN can help in the face of adverse weather events and the possibility of power cuts. 

SSEN’s Customer and Community Advisor for Wessex, Joe Cherrett met with Matt Kiddell of Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to hand over a supply of the packs and said: “Now with the assistance of our local Fire and Rescue Service, our SSEN Winter Packs can be further distributed across the region, helping to reach a wider audience and ensure even more local residents are aware of the assistance available to them. 

“Due to our partnership with Wessex Water, we’re able to supply a PSR to help both SSEN and Wessex Water customers through one single sign up that can be done by the individual, a family member or carer.

“This is a great opportunity to further promote the Priority Services Register and 105 emergency number to our customers, and we’re really grateful to Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service for coming on board to help raise awareness, enabling SSEN to target extra support to those who need it.”

Watch Manager Matt Kiddell, based at Christchurch fire station, said: “Every day, Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service staff carry out free ‘Safe and Well’ visits in the community. During these visits, we can provide and test smoke alarms, as well as talk about vital fire safety advice.

"Working in partnership with SSEN, we are now able to reduce the risk to our local community by delivering SSEN Winter packs whilst carrying out ‘Safe and Well’ checks. It’s so important to us that people know what to do during power cuts.

“To request a free ‘Safe and Well’ visit, please call 0800 038 2323 or alternatively you can apply via our website www.dwfire.org.uk."

Many people can feel vulnerable when their electricity goes off, especially during severe weather and customers can join the PSR if they:  

  • Are dependent on electricity for home medical care, for example a kidney dialysis machine or ventilator 
  • Have a chronic illness or short term medical condition; for example you are recovering from a major operation 
  • Are disabled 
  • Have special communication needs; for example because you are blind, partially sighted, deaf or hard of hearing 
  • Have children under five
  • Are over 60 years old 

To find out more and to access SSEN’s multi-language PSR leaflets, please go to the Priority Services Register page on our website - https://www.ssen.co.uk/PriorityServices/