Jessica Cejnar / Monday, March 23 @ 9:29 a.m. / Emergencies, Infrastructure
Pacific Power Will Suspend Late Fees, Non-Payment Disconnections During COVID-19 Pandemic
Del Norte County's electricity provider announced that it will suspend issuing late fees or disconnecting service for non-payment during the COVID-19 pandemic.
From a Saturday news release:
NORTHERN CALIFORNIA — In support of the stay-at-home directive ordered by the state of California, Pacific Power will reconsider non-essential system upgrades that require planned outages to maintain reliable power to all customers during the COVID-19 public health emergency. The company will also continue to suspend late payment fees and disconnections for non-payment, as previously announced.
Under Gov. Gavin Newsom’s order issued Thursday, March 19, 2020, utility company employees, along with other essential workers, are exempted from the stay-at-home order while performing job duties. Employees have been informed of this and will carry their ID badges at all times. In most cases, they will be in company branded vehicles and wearing company safety gear.
Crews will be at work ensuring that power interruptions are minimized during this time where uncertainty is high and most people are housebound. This is always the company’s top priority, but at this time crews will limit work to upgrades involving wildfire protection, projects critical to delivering power to customers, compliance obligations and outage response. Some of this work may require short-term power outages to complete work safely.
While these crews will be our most visible employees, they are not alone in serving you during this time of crisis. They are backed up by thousands of employees who are working in the six western states served by Pacific Power and its sister utility, Rocky Mountain Power, based in Salt Lake City. We are running power plants, managing grid operations and talking to customers.
If you have questions about your electric service or your account, call us 24/7 at 888-221-7070.
We are here for you
Pacific Power plans for emergencies such as the pandemic we are now experiencing. We have contingency plans for possible interruptions to supply chains for an extended period of time. Our business continuity and pandemic plans have been developed over decades and refined during regular drills. They are designed to protect our customers and employees and to ensure energy operations and infrastructure are supported properly. These measures will help us continue to provide safe and reliable electricity throughout even a prolonged emergency.
An invaluable tool for Pacific Power’s business continuity involves our ability to transfer customer care responsibilities from our Pacific Power team to our Rocky Mountain Power team in Utah. This allows the company to respond to customer emergencies when employees are asked to make adjustments.
As part of PacifiCorp, Pacific Power has a broad geographic footprint across six states and coordinates with fellow utilities and grid operators to plan for, prepare, and respond to all hazards that could potentially impact the energy grid—including a pandemic—with our partners in government at the local, state and federal levels. We are also following the recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and coordinating with state and local emergency management leaders.
We are dedicated to serving you in this crisis and know that working together we will get through this uncertain time.