Are you ready for possible power cuts? Student message

Are you ready for possible power cuts? Student message

Dear student 

You may have seen or heard news reports that planned power cuts may be needed early in the new year due to concerns over energy supplies. 

As well as loss of local power and heating any planned power cut could also see: 

  • Most buildings losing telephony, network, internet access and mechanical ventilation 

  • Buildings on the campus main heating system would cool down over a few hours 

  • The failure of pumps supplying water to upper floors of some buildings which would mean toilet and tap issues 

  • Street lighting and traffic signals not working, making road travel hazardous 

  • The mobile phone system potentially failing as little as an hour after loss of power with the possibility that the network operating companies might reduce the quality of the service, possibly to the old 2G standard - i.e. reduced to voice and text services only 


The University has been taking steps just in case planned power cuts should happen. These include: 

  • Planning for student and staff welfare 

  • The central building at Hillhead Student Village would remain open on any day it might be impacted to enable students to make use of the top floor social space. However, residents would be encouraged to stay in their flats where emergency lighting would also operate 

  • Hillhead residents would be contacted directly so they have advanced notice 

  • Student Support Team members would be on hand to help with any direct issues faced by students in halls before and after any outages 

  • It’s thought unlikely that both Old Aberdeen and Hillhead would be impacted on the same day. Therefore, if Hillhead is without power the Students Union Building should be available as an alternative safe space, although this still has to be confirmed 

Planned power cuts - also known as rota disconnections because they could be rotated in different areas - may not happen but, given the impact on the north-east of severe weather like Storm Arwen, it is sensible to prepare for all possibilities. 

You can see FAQs, advice and tips such as ensuring you have a torch in your accommodation at our special preparing for winter webpage

We hope you find this helpful and enables you to consider any contingency plans. 

Best wishes 

Tracey and Ruth 


Tracey Slaven 

University Secretary & Chief Operating Officer 


Ruth Taylor 

Vice-Principal (Education)