On 02/09/04 I received another phone call from a different person presumeably from the same department. She said that the entire bill for the quarter would be waived because the new total ($14.67) was such a small amount, the next bill was due soon, and I'd been unhappy with the service.
The amended bill arrived on 06/09/04. Thanks to some creative accounting, the new invoice was for $29.34 (twice what it should have been after applying the rebate).
I've made two phone calls to the person I spoke to in August (unanswered - I left a message both times), and received one back from one of his colleagues. She said he was on a business trip, and offered to help in his stead. I explained that my invoice was wrong, and asked for a new one. She said she'd look into it, and would call back later. That was on Monday 13/09/04. Not surprisingly, I haven't heard anything since.
Given that "AGL prides itself [on] the ethics and honesty of [its] organisation" it would appear that that pride is undeserved. [Matter finally resolved in customers favour after six months of seeking redress]
The company, based at North Sydney, was found guilty under the Occupational Health and Safety Act in the NSW Industrial Relations Commission sitting in Court Session for failing to ensure the health and safety of its employees and others not in its employ.
In November 1995 a gas pipeline at Railway Parade, Kogarah, was cut and capped by AGL in preparation for the demolition of four nearby shops.
The pipeline remained connected to the mains, and on 4 December the line severed, with the resulting gas leak causing explosions and fires.
An AGL Gas Networks Ltd maintenance crew sent to the scene after the first explosion did not have the necessary valve location map to enable them to find and shutdown the escaping gas.
While the maintenance crew searched for the shutdown valve and fire crews fought to extinguish the blaze, a second explosion occurred.
In imposing the penalty, Justice Monika Schmidt said: "I am satisfied that the risks to safety were foreseeable. They included the risk of death and injury, which must be reflected in the penalty imposed."
* May 2009
In fact, we had been contracted to Simply Energy (gas + elec) for over a year and owned the house for four years. Every AGL customer "service" person attempts to convince us we just moved in!
Of course we called AGL after getting the November letter (actually two bills for different amounts). The help desk woman apologised, said she could see the account had been transferred to them in error, and promised to send us back to Simply Energy. "No need to worry about it". Famous last words.
Come April 2009, and two more envelopes arrive from AGL. Amount owing is over $1,100, please pay within two weeks. An entire afternoon wasted calling AGL then Simply Energy then AGL (with SE on the line), then AGL again. Each time the recorded voice said we owed a different amount! In the first call, AGL told me to tell SE to check MSATS (their common database) for the handover date. SE said it was June but AGL was billing back to February! SE confirmed we'd paid up to June. All good so far.
AGL claims that because 130 days had passed without hearing from SE, they _own_ our account, under law. They could well be right, but surely SE would be due compensation? AGL checked their own records and could see that they had reminded themselves in November to ask SE for a "winback", but never actually sent the message to them.
To add to the insult, two days after those phonecalls we received a letter from AGL thanking us for agreeing to this payment plan during your phonecall. We did nothing of the sort! We laughed when we saw the "instalment plan" was one payment of the full amount including the months already paid, due in June. Ta.
The good thing about dealing with AGL is that you get to read up on what your rights are. You can read the entire ombudsman's website while you're on hold! In Victoria, utilities can't backbill residents for more than nine months' worth of power, and have to give an equivalent time to pay if requested. The longer they take to work their stuff out, the more free electricity we have received.
The last time I called them was a week ago, because they'd promised to call me by then. The guy was a lot more candid about the extent of their problems, said their complaints department was VERY busy and while they would try to ring me in the next week he couldn't guarantee it. Meanwhile (after I pressed him to say it) we should ignore the demands for payment. So we're relaxed and waiting ... next step the ombudsman because there's no way they can get away with this. [Resolved in the customers favour after what appears to be almost twelve months of negotiation]
* May 2010
trichloroethylene ingroundwater at a specific location beneath the Torrens Island Power Stationsite. The South Australia EPA was notified under Section 83A of the EnvironmentProtection Act.