FAQs about emergencies and personal safety

I can smell gas! What should I do?

If you think there may be a gas leak, first step is to make sure your safe. Turn off the gas at the meter and call the National Gas Service Emergency Line – 0800 111 999.


  • Smoke
  • Light matches
  • Turn lights on or anything electrical on or off. Also, refrain from using your mobile phone.


  • Open all doors and windows
  • Turn off your gas supply at the meter and leave it switched off until you are advised by an expert.

  • Call 0800 111 999 and they will be able to help.

Who should I call in a power cut?

If you have a power cut, just dial 105 and this will get you through to your local power distributer who are responsible for connecting your homes with the national grid. They will be able to let you know how long you are likely to be without power and are responsible for getting it backing on.

You can find out who your local distributer is at www.powercut105.com

Where can I get independent advice and help with energy debt?

There are various other organisations and schemes that can help if you are having financial difficulties, such as:

Fuel Direct is a government scheme that arranges for your energy bills or debt to be paid directly out of your benefits payments. This takes the hassle out of making regular payments yourself. You can find out more about this scheme here or by contacting your local Jobcentre or Pension Centre.

StepChange Debt Charity is the UK’s largest provider of free, independent debt advice. It helps thousands of people every week to overcome debt problems. You can talk to them for free on 0800 138 1111 (Monday to Friday 8am-8pm and Saturday 8am-4pm).

However, we know it’s not always easy to talk about debt. StepChange also have a wide range of online tools to help you manage your debt, such as their Debt Remedy Tool and 60-Second Debt Test.

National Debtline is an independent charity, dedicated to providing free debt advice to millions of people across England and Wales. They offer free advice online at www.mymoneysteps.org or through its helpline on 0808 808 4000 (Monday to Friday 9am-9pm and Saturday 9.30am-1pm.

After asking a few questions about your income, spending and debts, they can then work out the best way for you to manage your debts with step-by-step help and support to get back in control.

Face-to-Face Advice is available across the country for people who would rather discuss their finances in person. The Money Advice Service has an extensive directory so you can find a debt advice service near you.