Western Power Distribution has launched a new app to help its field staff access extra support for vulnerable customers in South Wales during the coronavirus outbreak.

WPD, the electricity distribution operator for the Midlands, the South West and South Wales, is working hard to keep the lights on for everyone during the pandemic, but is redoubling its efforts to reach out to the 1.9 million customers on its Priority Services Register. This includes people who may find a power cut difficult or are medically dependent on electricity.

During the crisis, WPD is providing additional help to customers like these by joining forces with local community partners to arrange access to extra support such as food and prescription services, telephone calls to help combat loneliness and advice on energy savings.

The new app makes it easier for field staff to refer customers they meet who may be struggling or in isolation due to coronavirus. The Covid19CustHelp app can be downloaded on company iPads which are routinely used by field staff responding to faults and power cuts.

Details of any customers submitted through the app will be passed to the relevant agency so they can be contacted for targeted support.

Alison Sleightholm, resources and external affairs director at WPD, said: “Now more than ever, we know our customers are relying on us to keep them safe, warm and able to carry out their daily activities at home, as well as to power the vital services we all rely on.

“We take our responsibility to our customers very seriously, particularly those on our Priority Services Register. This new app will make it easier for WPD employees to pass on details of any customers they come across who they feel may be in need of extra help, during these difficult times.”