A customer contacts EWOV after a power surge caused damage to her electrical appliances (February 2013)

Outages, brownouts and power surges
Case Number 2013/5630
Outcome Conciliation

The Issue

Mrs T experienced an unplanned voltage variation to her electricity supply that damaged her reverse cycle air-conditioner and other electrical appliances. She had to pay more than $1,200 to repair or replace the damaged appliances. She submitted a claim form to the electricity distribution company.

Mrs T explained to the company that as a single parent her repair bills put her into financial difficulty. The company advised her that the claim would have priority as a hardship case and would be processed within two business days. This was then extended to 20 days. Mrs T was also concerned that the company was planning on only offering to pay half of the amount she claimed.

The Investigation

Anxious about the delay in getting her claim form processed, Mrs T contacted EWOV.  EWOV liaised with the company which confirmed that the appliances were damaged due to an increased electrical supply voltage – this had also affected other properties in her area. The company’s reason for the delay in sending her compensation was that it had missed its payment cycle. As this was causing Mrs T undue hardship, EWOV raised the case to the investigation level and assisted in getting the claim form processed earlier.

The Outcome

The company provided Mrs T an apology for the inconvenience caused by the voltage variation incident. The company confirmed it would pay a total compensation claim of $1,190, which was more than the regulatory limit in accordance with the Electricity Industry Guideline No.11 - Voltage Variation Compensation. Mrs T was happy with this outcome.

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