National Grid Meets Record Customer Demand For Natural Gas As Winter Weather Blankets Northeast

Delivery System Performed Well During Recent Cold Snap; Company Prepared for Next Icy Blast and Reminds Customers to Put Safety First.

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Long Island, NY - January 7th, 2014 - Last week’s extreme cold pushed customer demand near record levels throughout National Grid’s U.S. system, with record delivery to its Long Island and Rockaway Peninsula customers and near record deliveries for the company’s New York City, Upstate New York and New England systems.

More extreme cold sweeping across the U.S. and into National Grid’s service areas tonight through Wednesday likely will have customer demand at or near the new thresholds again, with company officials reporting that the delivery system is prepared and performing very well.

All across National Grid’s service areas on Friday, the company’s 3.4 million natural gas customers used nearly 4.56 billion cubic feet, topping the old system record by more than 68 million cubic feet. National Grid on Long Island and the Rockaway Peninsula delivered more than 848 million cubic feet of gas to its customers last Friday, breaking the previous record set last Jan. 24 by more than 48 million cubic feet.

“We know that a safe and steady supply of natural gas is critical to our customers—especially during such brutal weather—which is why we work extremely hard to ensure the reliability of our systems,” said Bill Akley, Senior Vice President, U.S. Gas Operations, National Grid. “We are proud to report that our delivery system across all our U.S. companies has been performing very well under these demanding circumstances.”

Total gas sent to customers on Friday was the second highest total on record for National Grid in both Massachusetts and Rhode Island, and the fourth highest in the company’s Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island service areas in New York City. In the company’s upstate New York service areas, total gas in the system was the third highest on record for that region.

Extremely cold Arctic air combined in some areas with strong winds has forecasters predicting record or near-record low temperatures across much of the Northeast tonight through early Wednesday, suggesting that customer demand for natural gas will remain high.

As always, National Grid encourages customers to always be prepared and put safety first. National Grid offers the following tips for customers to stay safe and warm:

  • Be sure to check on elderly family members, neighbors and others who may need assistance during an extreme weather event.
  • The build up of ice around or over gas meters and vents for natural gas appliances could pose a serious safety risk. Ice falling from a roof can damage gas meters or service connections to customers’ homes or businesses, resulting in a gas leak.
  • Ice blocking vents could cause carbon monoxide (CO) to back up into a building and result in carbon monoxide poisoning for those inside.
  • To avoid these dangers, National Grid advises natural gas customers to closely inspect areas around and over gas meters, service hook-ups and vents for ice that could damage equipment or prevent CO from properly venting.
  • NEVER use your gas range to heat your apartment, or house. Your range's oven and top burners are designed to cook your food, NOT to heat your home. Prolonged use can reduce oxygen levels in the home and contribute to unusually excessive levels of CO.

Carbon Monoxide (CO)

  • The symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are similar to those of the flu. Depending upon the amount of carbon monoxide in the air and length of exposure, symptoms may include headaches, weakness, confusion, chest tightness, skin redness, dizziness, nausea, sleepiness, fluttering of the heart or loss of muscle control.
  • If you suspect carbon monoxide is present in your home, go outside immediately and breathe deeply; then call 911. If symptoms are severe, get medical attention right away.

Natural Gas

  • National Grid advises that you take immediate action anytime you suspect a natural gas leak:
  • Get Out - All occupants should leave the house immediately. Do not use the telephone or light switches for any reason.
  • Call Us – After leaving the house and reaching a safe environment, call the National Grid 24-hour gas emergency number for Long Island and the Rockaway Peninsula call 1-800-490-0045, for Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island call 718-643-4050.
  • Stay Out - Do not return to your home until National Grid tells you it is safe.

About National Grid
National Grid (LSE: NG; NYSE:NGG) is an electricity and gas company that connects consumers to energy sources through its networks. The company is at the heart of one of the greatest challenges facing our society - to create new, sustainable energy solutions for the future and developing an energy system that underpins economic prosperity in the 21st century. National Grid holds a vital position at the center of the energy system and it ‘joins everything up’.

In the northeast US, we connect more than seven million gas and electric customers to vital energy sources, essential for our modern lifestyles. In Great Britain, we run the gas and electricity systems that our society is built on, delivering gas and electricity across the country.

National Grid delivers electricity to approximately 3.3 million customers in Massachusetts, New York and Rhode Island. It manages the electricity network on Long Island under an agreement with the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA), and owns over 4,000 megawatts of contracted electricity generation, providing power to over one million LIPA customers. It is the largest distributor of natural gas in northeastern U.S., serving approximately 3.4 million customers in New York, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island.

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