Our customer services code of practice
Electricity North West owns, operates and maintains the electricity distribution network in the North West of England. We look after the safe delivery of electricity through the electricity network to your home. Electricity North West does not sell electricity but ensures it is delivered to you in a safe and efficient manner. The companies that sell electricity are known as suppliers.
Your electricity supplier who sends you a bill for your electricity, is responsible for your meter and also operates a range of free services through your supplier’s Priority Services Register. If you have an enquiry about your bill, your meter or your supplier’s Priority Services, you should contact your supplier. Contact details can be found on your latest electricity bill.
This page provides information on:
1. Contacting Electricity North West
2. Provision of Priority Services
3. Interruptions to your supply
4. Entering your home
5. Complaints and customer satisfaction
Electricity North West can also send you this leaflet free of charge in Braille, large print or on audio tape. They will also make this leaflet available in the main ethnic minority languages in our area on request.
Contacting Electricity North West
If you wish to report a loss of supply, if you are concerned about the safety of equipment or if you have a general enquiry or a complaint please call on us on 0800 195 4141. You can ring this number at any time of the day. If you are deaf or your hearing is impaired you can call 0800 458 9767 using a minicom.
Provision of Priority Services
If you are a domestic customer and are blind or deaf, of pensionable age, disabled or chronically sick or if you have a medical dependency on electricity, you can register with Electricity North West free of charge by:
(i) contacting your electricity supplier who will pass your details on to us. We need to know that you have given permission for them to hold these details. Your supplier is likely to be able to provide a variety of additional services that may be of interest and assistance to you. They will also be able to offer additional services through their Priority Services register. Their telephone number will be shown on your bill ; or
(ii) filling in the online registration form here, writing to us or calling us on 0800 195 4141, providing your name, address, telephone number and giving details of your equipment (e.g. type of medical equipment, kidney dialysis routine, mobility aids) and the name of your supplier. If you inform Electricity North West directly we will pass your details on to your electricity supplier with your agreement. Please make sure that we are kept informed of any changes in your circumstances or medical condition.
Interruptions to your supply
Sometimes we have to interrupt the electricity supply to carry out maintenance on the network. Electricity North West will write and tell all customers about a planned interruption to the electricity supply at least two days in advance. If you require any further information about a specific planned interruption please telephone the number in the notification letter advising of the interruption. If you are deaf or your hearing is impaired you can call 0800 458 9767 using a minicom.
Sometimes we may not be able to warn you that your power will be going off, because the cause is outside our control (for example, lightning may strike our electricity network). We will try to restore your supply as soon as possible. If you have medical support equipment you will need to plan in advance another source of power in case of power cuts and you should know how long this source of power will last. You should also make arrangements for alternative medical care if the supply is off for a long time. Your local hospital or GP should be able to help you do this.
What to do if you lose your electricity supply
- Check to see if any of your neighbours have lost their supply. If they have not, the problem could be with your electrical installation.
- If you have a trip switch, check to see if it has operated. If it has, switch off all your appliances and try to reset the trip. The supply may then come back on.
- If the trip switch has not operated, if your neighbours also have no electricity or if you can find no other reason, there may be a problem with the electricity supply in your locality. If so please call 0800 195 4141 to report the problem.
- It is useful to keep a torch handy.
- If you have a battery-operated radio, listen to the local radio station as we will keep them informed of electricity supply problems especially during times of severe weather. We will also keep your electricity supplier informed of the position.
Entering your home
From time to time Electricity North West may need to visit your home. The visitor will either be an engineer if your supply needs attention or, if Electricity North West are instructed by your supplier, a meter operative to carry out work on your meter.
Electricity North West follows a code of practice so that you can be sure that all visits are made by properly trained employees who are genuine officials.
- All Electricity North West employees will show an identity card showing the company name, their own name, a reference number and a colour photograph of the individual. These identity cards also include the means of confirming the identity of the individual through a telephone number printed on the identity card.
- Electricity North West will take all necessary steps to ensure that all ID cards are returned when an employee leaves the company.
- Where possible, all vehicles used by Electricity North West for visits to customers’ premises will carry the Electricity North West logo.
- Where possible, all Electricity North West employees will wear clothing indicating they are from Electricity North West.
- All Electricity North West employees will be able to inform you of the helpline number upon request.
- Electricity North West operates a password scheme for appointments that can help you keep out bogus callers and you can contact us to tell us the password you have chosen. If your supplier has arranged a metering appointment, please ask them to agree a password with you. Electricity North West will use this when visiting you.
Electricity North West will ensure that their employees and contractors are aware of the contents of this code and will comply with it at all times. They will be appropriately qualified and fully trained for the purpose of the visit and will be courteous at all times indealing with you and give clear and accurate explanations as well as respecting your premises. If you have any doubts about whether a caller is genuine, do not let them into your home.
Complaints and customer satisfaction
If you are dissatisfied with our electricity distribution service, please contact us. If you write with an enquiry or a complaint, please use the address below and we will reply within 10 working days. Many of the services are covered by Guaranteed Standards. Your complaint may be about one of these services. If the standards are not met we will, subject to certain exclusions, make a payment to you via your electricity supplier. Your supplier will send you details of these standards each year. If you have a problem with your electricity meter or your bill, please contact your supplier, their telephone number will be on the back of the bill. Electricity North West will deal with all complaints confidentially and in a fair and efficient manner. We will apologise where the service has not met our usual high standards. Electricity North West also have arrangements in place to deal with your enquiry or complaint if your first language is not English.
Electricity North West
PO Box 218
If you telephone with an enquiry or a Electricity North West will aim to deal with your call or will speak to the appropriate person to try and resolve the problem. If you are not satisfied with the results, please let Electricity North West know and we will refer the matter to an appropriate senior manager.
If Electricity North West has fully reviewed your complaint but you remain dissatisfied you can refer your complaint to the Energy Ombudsman. The Energy Ombudsman is a free and independent body who will be able to advise you if you are able to accept your complaint under the ombudsman scheme. Referral to the Ombudsman can occur by customers if 8 weeks have passed since their original complaint and they have not received a satisfactory resolution, or by Electricity North West if they consider the complaint to be deadlocked.
Ombudsman Contact Details:
(Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm)
0330 440 1624 or 01925 530263
Ombudsman Services: Energy
PO Box 966
Email: [email protected]
Note: This Code of Practice has been approved by the Gas and Electricity Markets Authority under Conditions 17, 18, 19 & 21 of our Electricity Distribution Licence granted by the Secretary of State under Section 6 of the Electricity Act 1989 as amended by Utilities Act 2000. energy watch were also consulted about the form and content of this statement.
We have translated the code of practice into a number of languages for our customers.
Bangla / Chinese / Gujarti / Hindi / Punjabi / Urdu
Our Code of Practice is also available in large print, Braille and audio CD. To order, please telephone us on 0800 195 4141.