Important information: Potential delay to your meter installation

Between 19 May and 6 June, it may take longer than usual to arrange the meter installation with your gas supplier. This is because of an Ofgem initiative to replace the IT systems used across the UK gas market. It involves all gas suppliers and will ultimately make it easier for you to switch supplier and/or get a smart meter. You can find more information about Project Nexus on Ofgem’s website.

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Useful information and advice

What should I do if I smell gas?
If you smell gas call the National Gas Emergency Service immediately on 0800 111 999. Make sure you put out any naked flames, open doors and windows, keep people away from the area and turn the gas off at the emergency control valve.
What happens when someone dials the National Gas Emergency Service?
When you dial 0800 111 999, your call will be routed to the call centre where trained operators are working round-the-clock waiting to take your call. A call handling agent will log all the appropriate details onto a computer. The kind of information you’ll be asked for includes: • The address / location of the suspected gas escape or gas emergency • How many people are at the property • Where the smell is most noticeable • How long the smell has been noticeable • Are any neighbours affected • Your name and phone number • Any special circumstances or access information
How long will you have to wait for an engineer to arrive?
Northern Gas Networks aims to attend all uncontrolled gas escapes within one hour, and all controlled escapes within two hours. A controlled gas escape is one where the person reporting it has confirmed that the gas emergency control valve serving the premises has been turned off and the smell of gas has gone. An uncontrolled gas escape covers all others. Sometimes, our Rapid Response Engineers will be sent to a leak that has been reported outdoors. Around a quarter of these turn out not be gas leaks at all. Around 80% of the gas escapes we attend are inside buildings. That means the escape is related to internal pipework, a boiler, gas fire or other gas appliance.
What if the gas leak is indoors?
Our engineers will always make the situation safe when called to a suspected gas escape. However, the emergency service provided by Northern Gas Networks under the terms of its License doesn’t cover repairs to appliances or installation pipework which can’t be completed within 30 minutes.
What happens once your engineers have made the situation safe?
Once we have made the property safe, our Rapid Response Engineer will explain that any work on appliances (e.g. cookers, boilers or fires) has to be carried out by Gas Safe Registered engineer. You can find details of Gas Safe Registered engineers here: www.gassaferegister.co.uk
How do you ensure there is always enough gas to meet demand?
National Grid is responsible for ensuring the national gas pipeline system is kept in balance. It ensures a balanced system by buying and selling gas and using stored gas to ensure that in most normal circumstances, demand can be met. Usually the system is balanced by gas bought on the open market through the ‘On the Day Commodity Market (OCM)’ set up as part of the Network Code - the rules that govern the supply of gas. National Grid also has gas in store (the so called Top-up and Operating Margins gas) to ensure the system is balanced and that supplies are maintained.
If you have to dig on my property how will you fill in the excavation?
Repairing or renewing gas pipes inevitably involves some digging. Where possible we try to restrict this work to public areas but sometimes we have no choice but to dig small holes in driveways or footpaths in people’s gardens. For planned work, we always tell householders in advance if we need to do this. If we dig on your property we will always reinstate the area we have disturbed to a high standard. When reinstating your driveway or footpath we will match the original material i.e. concrete for concrete, tarmac for tarmac. Although we will do our best to replicate the colour and texture of the existing area it is virtually impossible to match it exactly. This is usually due to the age, weathering and general wear and tear of the original surface. Colour matching usually improves as the new surface weathers.
What do I do if I suspect a gas leak?
If you suspect a gas leak you should do the following immediately: • Call the National Gas Emergency Service on 0800 111 999 • Open all doors and windows • Turn the gas off at the emergency control valve if possible, unless the meter is located in the cellar or basement. The emergency control valve is located near your gas meter. • Do not turn lights on or off and avoid using other electrical switches and appliances • Don’t smoke, light a match or any other naked flame
What do I do if I have no gas supply?
It doesn’t happen often and when it does we promise to get you back on as quickly as we can, but if you do find yourself with no gas you should do the following immediately: • Call the National Gas Emergency Service on 0800 111 999 • Open all doors and windows • Turn the gas off at the emergency control valve if possible, unless the meter is located in the cellar or basement. The emergency control valve is located near your gas meter. • Turn off all gas appliances • Do not turn lights on or off and avoid using other electrical switches and appliances • Don’t smoke, light a match or any other naked flame
What can I do to stay warm while my gas is off?
No one wants to be without heating, hot water or the ability to cook and we’ll do everything to get your gas back on as quickly as possible. We will provide electrical heaters and hot plates for those who need them most while the gas is turned off. Make sure you wear extra layers to keep warm and drink plenty of hot drinks.