Power and heat will stay on for New Yorkers during the COVID-19 outbreak, even if customers are behind on their bills.
Both National Grid and Con Edison announced that they would suspend service shutoffs and collection-related activities during the public health crisis. Safety-related shutoffs, such as gas leaks, will still take place.
National Grid employees responding to service issues will ask customers questions about recent travel and potential virus exposure before entering their homes. The company advised customers to inform workers if they have been sick or are under quarantine.
Con Edison first suspended service shutoffs in the New Rochelle containment area before expanding to the entirety of Westchester County and New York City yesterday.
“We recognize that certain customers may experience financial difficulty as a result of the coronavirus outbreak, whether they or a family member fall ill, are required to quarantine, or because their income is otherwise affected,” National Grid wrote in a statement. “We hope to alleviate our affected customers’ concerns about their electricity and natural gas service during this time.”
Despite the suspension of shutoffs, both companies advised customers who are able to keep paying their bills.