Withernsea in from cold as gas supply cut in storms restored after more than 24 hours

A Yorkshire seaside town which had its entire gas supply cut off came in from the cold tonight after engineers carried out repair work.

More than 3,000 homes in Withernsea were left without gas after pipes were believed to have been damaged during the recent stormy weather.

Northern Gas Networks said the supply failed on Saturday at 6pm after water is believed to have entered the pipeline.

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Gas supply was restored just before 9pm tonight (Sun Jan 15).

A statement on the Northen Gas Networks website includes a guide informing customers how to safely turn their gas supply back on.

Ian Waddle, Northern Gas Networks regional manager, said: “We would like to thank residents in Withernsea for their patience and co-operation, along with the other agencies and volunteers who have helped provide support since this incident occurred.”

The breach is suspected to have caused the entire system to shut down for safety reasons, leaving 3,000 homes in the town without gas for cooking and heating.

The most vulnerable residents were being prioritised for support, with council domiciliary care workers visiting care homes and care providers in the town to offer help where needed.

Electric heaters were handed out to the vulnerable, who had faced the prospect of another night without power.

Residents were also advised to check on their neighbours and relatives during the disruption to the gas network.

Alex Burkenshaw, senior carer at Queens Residential Homes, said residents and staff were coping while power was being restored.

She said: “We’re doing all right – we’ve been lucky really, the gas board have been round a few times and have given us 16 heaters.

“Quite a few families have brought them in too. We have 40 residents so it is a big place to heat, but we have blankets and things.”

Kitchen staff prepared hot meals with just one electric oven after the second, gas-powered, oven stopped working.

Ms Burkenshaw added: “One oven is out of use, but we have still been able to serve hot meals.”

Mark Horsley, Northern Gas Networks chief executive officer, said: “The main governor feeding Withernsea shut itself off around 6pm on Saturday.

“We think it was due to the adverse weather and water getting into the gas system and so the actual equipment was doing the right thing and made the whole network very safe.”