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Dominion, SEC, CVEC suspend service disconnects amid pandemic

Area power companies have made the decision not to turn off power for nonpayment during the coronavirus outbreak.

“We will not shut off your power for nonpayment.”

Those were the words of Dominion Energy representatives after the business posted a “COVID-19 Update” to its Twitter page March 13, announcing that the utility company would not be shutting off power for those currently unable to pay their electric bills during the coronavirus pandemic.

“People rely on us to meet critical needs, and they should not have to worry about losing service during this critical time,” Dominion officials announced. “We have suspended all service disconnections as individuals, families, businesses and communities pull together to meet our collective needs. We know the communities we serve rely on us to provide an essential service.”

Dominion officials also announced it would be reconnecting residential customers whose services were shut off, asking anyone whose service was previously disconnected for nonpayment to contact them so Dominion can work to restore service.

In its statement to the public, the electric provider also asked customers who normally pay their bill in person to choose another method such as online bill payment and payment by mail. The company is also donating $1 million to coronavirus relief efforts to support local organizations such as the American Red Cross.

Dominion’s full update can be viewed here.

Southside Electric Cooperative CEO and President Jeff Edwards released a similar statement Monday afternoon, March 16, stating that the company was waving service disconnects and penalty fees for members.

Central Virginia Electric Cooperative will do the same. The company announced that, effective March 16, it will suspend disconnects for nonpayment for residential and business accounts and will waive late fees until further notice.