The world as we knew it has changed rapidly over the past number of weeks as Ireland recorded its first cases of Covid-19. We in Electric Ireland want to preserve normal services in so far as is possible during this time . However, we also recognise that many of our customers may be anxious, or have financial difficulties, in the coming weeks. As a result, we have put a number of initiatives in place which we hope will help allay some of those concerns;
- Firstly, we have suspended disconnections at present. If you or someone you know is concerned about paying their bill, we would ask that they engage with us at an early stage and we promise an understanding ear and that we will work with them to find a solution.
- We had already announced price reductions of up to €100 p.a. before the crisis started in Ireland. Those price reductions will take effect next week (1st April), at which time, electricity unit rates will be reduced by 2.5% and gas by 11.5% . That will mean that people who are spending more time at home will be less impacted by energy bills than otherwise would have been the case. The change to daylight savings should also help in that respect.
- Conscious of social distancing, we have suspended face-to-face sales activity, and our technicians will only come to your house or place of work with your agreement to repair a fault or for an arranged outdoor installation.
- Meter readings are not being taken where a reader would have to enter a home. We will estimate customers’ usage for the foreseeable future in those cases, but any customer who wishes to receive an accurate bill can let us know their actual meter reading over the phone or online.
- You may also wish to keep journeys outside of your home to a minimum. The most convenient way to manage your electricity or gas account is through your online account, where – as well as submitting a meter reading – you can also pay your bill or top-up your electricity Pay-As-You-Go electricity meter. To access Your Account Online, read Frequently Asked Questions or to find more information, please visit our website
In addition to these measures, the Commission for Regulation of Utilities has announced a temporary increase to the PAYG Gas emergency credit for all PAYG customers. Emergency credit will increase from €10 to €100, allowing customers to maintain gas supply for a longer period of time, even if they cannot continue to purchase credit as regularly as usual.
We are currently working in accordance with HSE and best practice advice to maximise the safety of our employees, our agents and you – our customers. As a result, most of our staff are now working remotely from offices and minimising any visits to customer premises. The systems and processes we have in place to ensure business continuity are helping them adjust to this “new normal” working environment.
Because we have contingency plans in place, we are continuing to provide all normal customer services at present. However, if an escalation of the Covid-19 issue causes us to have to work at reduced capacity, or if we anticipate a delay in service, we will communicate that directly to you and we thank you in advance for your understanding.
As you know, the coronavirus situation is still fluid, so we will continue to review the best course of action on a daily basis. We are working hard to minimise disruption for our customers at this difficult time and thank you very much for your co-operation and patience.
We wish you and your family continued health and safety and assure you of our best attention at all times.