I discovered at around 9:55 this morning that Julie Skentelbery was going to be interviewing Scott Mann, our local Conservative MP here in North Cornwall, on her BBC Radio Cornwall programme a few minutes later.
More in hope than expectation I dialled the number that had just been announced and mentioned that I had already asked Scott some questions about the recent power cuts via email, but had yet to receive an answer.
Advance to around 19 minutes 45 seconds into the recording of Julie’s show on BBC Sounds to discover what happened thereafter:
It is now 7 PM on the evening of Monday February 21st. Here is Western Power Distribution’s current live power cut map for North Cornwall:
You can no doubt see the blue blob over the Davidstow substation indicating that there are currently power cuts on 4 different feeders? Some date back to the arrival of Storm Eunice on Friday morning. That is 3 and a half days ago.
Others are more recent, occurring as Storm Franklin passed overhead yesterday afternoon and overnight. One at least has just had its “estimated time of restoration” put back until 23:30 tomorrow night:
[Edit – 10:00 on February 22nd]
The last local power cut caused by Storm Eunice on Friday morning was finally fixed at 5:33 this morning:
That adds up to four nights without electric power for the last 6 properties to be restored. There are currently still two other faults outstanding at the Davidstow substation, but they are more recent:
Here’s how the current situation looks across the rest of Cornwall and Devon:
The Met Office have just issued a rare red wind warning for the North Cornwall coast when Storm Eunice arrives tomorrow morning:
. The storm looks fairly innocuous on the current Met Office synoptic charts:
However Storm Eunice is a “bomb cyclone“, so hurricane force winds are certainly possible in the Davidstow area. The forecast for tomorrow may still change, but the Met Office currently put it this way:
Extremely strong west to southwesterly winds will develop over southwest England and south Wales early on Friday. Widespread inland gusts of 70-80 mph are likely and up to around 90 mph near some coasts, with dangerous conditions on beaches and seafronts. Winds are expected to ease from the west during the late morning.
What to expect
Flying debris resulting in danger to life
Damage to buildings and homes, with roofs blown off and power lines brought down
Uprooted trees are likely
Roads, bridges and railway lines closed, with delays and cancellations to bus, train, ferry services and flights
Power cuts affecting other services, such as mobile phone coverage
Large waves and beach material being thrown onto coastal roads, sea fronts and homes, including flooding of some coastal properties