Gas supply emergencies

""It’s the responsibility of every large energy user to be prepared to cope with a Gas Supply Emergency. UK gas supplies have become more reliable in recent years. However, as gas supply is influenced by a wide range of events, such as unusual weather conditions, supply failures and European gas demand, it’s hard to predict when there may be a shortage.

Gas Supply Emergency

A Gas Supply Emergency happens when there’s not enough gas pressure to maintain a safe supply to all customers. As a result, gas transporters might ask gas consumers to stop using gas and/or isolate local gas supplies. As the priority is to keep supplying domestic customers for as long as possible, business customers will be asked to stop taking gas first.

Gas Supply Emergency

If your local gas transporter contacts you and instructs your business to stop taking gas, you must turn off all gas-using equipment safely and as soon as possible. It’s usually easier to turn off each appliance or piece of equipment individually, because if you turn off your supply at the main gas control valve, you’ll need to call out an engineer to turn the supply back on after the emergency is over.

Public appeals may also be made to turn down or turn off gas-using equipment. Please co-operate with these appeals as far as you can. When the Gas Supply Emergency has ended, you must not start using gas again until your gas transporter tells you to go ahead.

Under the Gas Safety (Management) Regulations (1996), it’s a criminal offense to knowingly fail to comply with an instruction to stop taking gas. So if your gas transporter directs you to do so, you must act as quickly and safely as possible.

How it affects my business

If a Gas Supply Emergency is declared, any business that uses more than 732,000 kWh (25,000 therms) of gas a year might be asked to stop taking gas. If your business uses more than 732,000kWh of gas a year, you must provide us with emergency contact details in case a Gas Supply Emergency is declared. You can do this by completing our online form.