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The Office of Utilities Regulation, OUR, says it has seen a significant jump in the number of customer complaints during the April to June quarter of 2020.

In a statement over the weekend, the OUR said it has seen a 91% increase in average complaints for the quarter.


The OUR says the spike is due to it receiving just under 2,000 complaints for the period.

This is well above the 1,033 for the preceding quarter.

It says complaints pertaining to the Jamaica Public Service, JPS, recorded the largest increase, at 196%.

This represents a move from 303 in the January to March quarter to 8-hundred and 98 in the April to June quarter.

The OUR says when comparing the current and preceding quarters, the data indicates that the most significant increase related to billing matters, which rose by 168%.

The utility regulator says disconnections increased by one-hundred and 25 per cent, while Terms and Conditions of Service registered an increase of one-hundred and 13%. 

Service interruption issues, at 12% of total contacts, remained the second highest reason for customers contacting the OUR.

The regulator says the JPS and NWC also recorded increases in the number of breaches of their Guaranteed Standards during the quarter. 

JPS’ compliance report on its Guaranteed Standards’ performance indicated that almost 16 thousand breaches were committed during the current period.

This  represents an increase of 22%. 

These breaches attracted potential compensatory payments of approximately $35-million. 

However, no compensation was made to customers as the JPS advised that it is still awaiting a response from the Ministry of Science, Energy and Technology regarding its request to suspend the Guaranteed Standards.

The light and power company says this is due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on its operations and measures instituted by the government under the Disaster Risk Management Act to contain the spread of the coronavirus.

Estimated bills, connections to supply, and reconnections accounted for the highest number of breaches for the JPS. 

These breaches of the Guaranteed Standards accounted for approximately 99% of breaches and compensatory payments, respectively. 

The NWC’s Guaranteed Standards compliance report indicates that 753 breaches were committed during the current quarter, which represents a 35% increase.