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EWOV will be closed from 4 pm Tuesday 25 June 2024 to 8.30 am Wednesday 26 June 2024.

If your electricity gas or water has been disconnected or restricted, please refer to the emergency contact number noted on your bill‌.

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When you are impacted by storms, bushfires, floods or other natural disasters you are entitled to support from government and community agencies and your energy and water providers.

If you are facing difficulties receiving the required support, you can contact us for advice. If you have raised a problem with your water and/or energy provider and you are unsatisfied with their response, please contact us to lodge a complaint. Even if the issue is months or a year old, we may still be able to assist.

In certain situations, we can offer targeted outreach services to affected communities. If government and community workers believe that their community could benefit from EWOV's face-to-face assistance, please contact us at outreachengagement@ewov.com.au.

What government and community agency supports are available?

What support is available from your energy and/or water provider?

Communicating supply outages

After and/or during a natural disaster, energy distributors will often de-energise large areas to safely complete works so they can restore power. Distributors are required to include details of outages and expected reconnection times on their websites. Different distributors operate in different parts of Victoria. To access relevant information, please go to the following distributors’ websites:

Electricity

Gas

Financial difficulty assistance

By law, energy and water providers must offer you assistance when you are facing financial difficulties and are struggling to pay your bills. This assistance can involve things such as:

  • pausing any planned disconnection proceedings;
  • giving you more time to pay your bill;
  • establishing a payment plan to assist you in paying outstanding debt; and/or
  • pausing a payment plan and debt referrals during and/or after a natural disaster.

If you are facing financial difficulty after or during a natural disaster, if you can, please contact your provider and seek assistance. If you consider the support they are providing is insufficient, please contact us and we will assist in investigating and/or negotiating a fair and reasonable outcome.

What are some common issues that arise after or during a natural disaster and what is the best way to address them?

Estimated billing

Providers often estimate bills after a natural disaster because a meter was destroyed or is inaccessible so they can’t see how much energy and/or water you used. The estimated bills are often based on your historical usage which means that you might be charged for periods when there was no supply at your property. If you experience this, please contact your provider in the first instance and explain the problem. If you consider their response is insufficient please contact us. To help our investigation of the complaint, please try and maintain records for when you were unable to reside at your property and/or when you did not have electricity/gas supply.

High bills

During a natural disaster your meter may be damaged causing it to inaccurately record increased usage. When you think this may have occurred and you have not been able to resolve the problem with your provider, please contact us and we can investigate and/or negotiate a fair and reasonable outcome.

Meter replacement

If your meter has been damaged or destroyed, you may need a new meter at your property. Natural disasters often make this more difficult due to issues such as the surrounding areas being unsafe. If you are experiencing undue delays, please contact us and we may be able to assist with your new meter being installed more quickly.

Daily supply charges and other charges

After a natural disaster, it is possible that providers may seek payment for things such as supply charges when there was no supply at the property and/or reconnection fees when reestablishing a property. If you are facing difficulties with fees of this nature, please contact us and we can investigate and/or negotiate a fair and reasonable outcome.

Important steps to take to prepare for a natural disaster

Life support registration

Make sure you register yourself as a life support customer with your provider as soon as possible and develop a back-up plan for how to respond unplanned interruptions which are more frequent during natural disasters.

Other

Visit the Emergency Victoria website which includes relevant information such as:

  • emotionally preparing for natural disasters;
  • assessing what supplies you need;
  • understanding warnings; and
  • preparing for fires and floods.