Britons face power outages as officials blame the Met Office WFH for missing the Big Freeze

BRITS faces rolling blackouts with the Met Office being blamed for failing to give enough warning about the current sub-zero weather.

Insiders believe that if experts predicted the low temperatures early enough, officials could have stockpiled the gas to meet demand.

Britons are facing power outages due to the cold weather

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Britons are facing power outages due to the cold weatherCredit: PA

Alternatively, Britons could be hit by blackouts while the national grid struggles to cope, the Mail on Sunday reports.

Some Westminster sources have now questioned whether the Met Office’s work-from-home advice could be behind the failures.

One told the paper: “Is this another occasion where working from home has lowered the quality of public service?”

And temperatures fell to -17.3 degrees Celsius with the severe cold wave that swept Britain this week.

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Sources claim that forecasters “dramatically underestimated” the magnitude of the explosion in the Arctic.

They claimed that experts told then Energy Secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg there was “less than a one in ten chance” of temperatures dropping as low as they did.

Freezing weather has led National Grid to launch a backup power plan amid fears that power supplies are running low.

It launched its coal-fired units for the first time this winter after previously claiming they would only be deployed as a “last resort” to prevent power outages.

Independent energy analyst Tony Jordan said: “The extreme cold has caught meteorologists – and the national grid that relies heavily on them to plan our energy needs – by surprise.

“We are far from clear when it comes to avoiding shortages and possibly even blackouts.”

Concerns have been raised that a three-hour blackout could hit parts of the UK this winter.

Government documents seen by The Sun in October revealed plans for blackouts designed to conserve energy supplies.

Power outages can be introduced in the event of an emergency scenario where there is a massive shortage of gas, which is used to generate electricity.

Last week, the UK used up a fifth of the gases it stored in just six days as temperatures plummeted.

Today, however, ministers urged the British to “trust” the supplies.

Oliver Dowden said that an “extremely extreme and unexpected scenario” would cause the network to collapse.

The weather is set to improve from tomorrow, when the mercury is likely to push 14°C in some areas.

But Britain is expected to experience its first freezing rain and snow today, which leads to chaos on the roads.

The Met Office said it had identified a “potential cold snap scenario” with the threat of snow and ice in December, which was “largely seen”.

The Department of Energy said: “As a responsible government, we are constantly planning for a wide range of potential scenarios, and are preparing robust contingency plans so as to limit any potential impact.

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“This is not a direct result of the current cold snap.”

A cold snap hit Britain this week

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A cold snap hit Britain this weekCredit: PA
Experts say the Met Office did not provide enough warnings

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Experts say the Met Office did not provide enough warningsCredit: Alamy
The British were warned of a looming blackout

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The British were warned of a looming blackoutCredit: Paul Marriott


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