Keeping the gas flowing in 2020: How our local engineers have been dealing with the challenges of coronavirus

helping our community

Paul Musselwhite, a Cadent Network Supervisor, managing emergency gas operations in the Barnet area, reflects on the challenges of keeping the gas flowing safely during the 2020 coronavirus outbreak.
Coronavirus has had a massive impact on my team and I as we had to deal with new government guidelines on protective equipment as well as managing the anxieties of the public and our teams.
Virus or no virus the gas emergency service must keep operating 24-7, 365 days a year.
However, in March 2020 all of a sudden, we were thrown new curveballs such as our engineers having to wear additional protective gear as well as reassuring the public that we had taken all appropriate safety measures.
Another challenge was trying to keep our team upbeat including colleagues who were self-isolating during the first lockdown as well as being out on the frontlines with our operational engineers reassuring with them.
It’s been a fine balancing act between trying to maintain some level of normality while also keeping them updated with the latest updates on the virus – which at times could be confusing and contradictory.
There was also the challenge of onboarding new colleagues during a time of lockdown and we had to be flexible with the ways in which we trained.
This is the first time I’ve experienced a health emergency of this magnitude, however I’m proud of the way my team and I have gotten through it.
We’re now in the season of shorter days and colder weather but our customers can rest assured we’ll continue to be there for them, 24-7, 365 days a year, lockdown or no lockdown.


Cadent is the UK’s largest gas distribution network with a 200-year legacy.  We are in a unique position to build on strong foundations whilst encouraging the curiosity to think differently and the courage to embrace change.  Day to day we continue to operate, maintain and innovate the UK’s largest gas network, transporting gas safely and protecting people in an emergency.   Our skilled engineers and specialists remain committed to the communities we serve, working day and night to ensure gas reaches 11 million homes from Cumbria to North London and the Welsh Borders to East Anglia, to keep your energy flowing. 

Future of Gas: Here at Cadent we support the Government’s plans to reach Net Zero by 2050. That means we’re backing the introduction of hydrogen as a low carbon alternative to natural gas for the future. We know people love the controllability of gas and, with our network already in place, it makes sense to switch to the lower carbon alternative offered by hydrogen, which we believe can keep homes and businesses warm for generations to come.

Cadent manages the national gas emergency service free phone line on behalf of the gas industry - 0800 111 999*

Cadent Gas Ltd is owned by a consortium of global investors.

*All calls are recorded and may be monitored.

Media contacts

Ben Green

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