The Energy watchdog Ofgem has demanded prompt action from energy suppliers after it was discovered up to 1.5 million pre-payment customers have been overcharged by faulty gas meters.
Meters installed as long ago as 2007 where not working properly when they were installed. It has come to light that they were manufactured with a calibration fault.
Angela Knight, chief executive of Energy UK
“Suppliers are working hard to roll out a solution for an issue that has affected some pre-payment gas meters. The meters were manufactured with a problem, where they over-collected from customers. However, the companies know who is affected and will be getting in touch directly to put the meters right and refund any money owed.”
“The suppliers and the wider industry are all very sorry this problem has occurred but are already getting in contact with customers. Customers do not need to do anything – their supplier will get in touch. But if they are concerned, they just need to contact their energy company, who will be able to help.”
Rachel Fletcher, Ofgem’s senior partner for markets, says:
“We are determined that no consumer should lose out because some energy suppliers have overcharged some consumers on pre-payment meters. Suppliers must act quickly to resolve the problem in a way that treats customers fairly. We have not ruled out enforcement action”
Ofgem expected the industry to:
- Come forward with a swift timetable for resolving all traceable cases of overcharging customers.
- Repay consumers within a clearly agreed and publicly announced timetable
- Reconfigure meters as quickly as possible
- Protect customers from over –payments in the meantime
Energy UK says that since the 30th October 2014 all new or replacement gas cards have been working properly with old meters being fixed on a rolling basis.