Fuck you Fla City Gas!

Florida City Gas came to my house in November to install a new remote read meter. Fine. Lay off meter readers and make more money. Send contractors to do the work. OK. The temps dropped off in Florida about the same time, so my gas usage went up. Expected. Then in February, when the temperature got warm, my gas bill went thru the roof! Not good. I go check the meter and smell gas. Get the soapy water and see the leak. I tighten the connection and fix the leak. Call the gas company for credit towards the bill. Then I get customer support on the other side of the world. “You have leak?” “No, I fixed it.” “You should not do that. Please call for leak repair” Well this goes on and on until I hit frustration point and get escalated to another other side of the world supervisor. Same reading from the script fucking shit! “OK, I have a fucking leak, you better send someone!”
I then call the local leak phone number and request it be checked. Guy comes out and yup, leak at the shut-off valve and leak at the purge cap. He tells me this happend alot with the contractor installs. So 3 leaks in all. Now they are duly reported. I call again a week later to get the bill adjusted. It’s Bob on the other side of the world and I go thru this crap again till the give me to someone in the States. "Yup, we see you had a leak, but we’re not going to adjust, it’s not our LIABILITY…(key word there)!
“Wait! Your contractors came and replaced the meter and did a shit job and it’s not your responsibility?”
…them… “No your gas usage was normal for Dec and Jan and you’re responsible for gas leaks past the meter”

…Me- “But your contractors did a bad job. It was their resposibility to check for leaks and they didn’t. You can see I have 3 times the usage for February and the average temperature was 5 degrees warmer! I need you to adjust the bill!”

…them- “We are not LIABLE for gas leaks after the meter. We didn’t charge you for the gas that leaked at the shut off valve.”

…Me- “No Shit! I understand how the meter works. Do you understand how temperature changes affect metal fittings? Do you know how to check for leaks? Do you understand how leaks get worse not better, whether it’s your cars radiator, you house A/C, or the faucet in your kitchen?”

…them- “We understand. We are not LIABLE for the gas you’ve leaked. We are sorry, but the bill is yours. Please pay it.”

…Me- " Your ignorant and I’m contactin the Florida Public Utilities comm.

That was basically it, except this went around about 3 times and they were supposed to call me back… Didn’t happen, so I called again and once again got the SAME FUCKING “not our LIABILITY shit”!

Sent the FPUC a detailed complaint, and low and behold in 1 day I get a call from Florida Shitty Gas somewhere in Georgia! This went not much better, with me patiently trying to explain basic physics and cause and effect of their shitty contractors causing this problem. They called back again today, and it still went the same way… We aren’t liable… We can’t adjust your bill…

ARRRGGGH Stupid ignorant Fucktards! What is it that isn’t clear? Your guys installed a new fucking meter and caused these leaks! I haven’t had a problem with my bills for twenty fucking years til your contractors fucked up the install! While its cold, I’m using my heater, and the house line pressure is lower, so the leak would be slower. Now it’s hot, the fittings expand, there is little gas usage so it will leak more! Idiots!

I can hardly wait til I hear back from the FPUC with their response. I should probably double up on my blood pressure meds for that one. I see an email to my Congressman and Governer and local Florida Representative in the near future.

Reminds me of the time I had Qwest install a DSL line. Yes, this is going back a few years, but it still rankles like hell. At the time, we had two phone lines coming to the apartment, but we only used one. Sure enough, the installer disconnected the one we were using and installed the DSL there instead of using the one we didn’t want. You wouldn’t believe the difficulty I had getting them to send the guy out to fix it. They kept trying to tell me it was now the phone company’s problem, and they couldn’t touch the phone company’s line, despite the fact that the guy obviously had no problem touching it the first time. Ah, it’s getting me all pissed off again. Long story short, I eventually got ahold of the technician directly, and he was way cool about it. Came right back and fixed it in ten minutes. Thank heavens for the added efficiency of phone centers.

OP, does your local news station have one of those consumer spots on their show? I’d be all about contacting them, stressing of course, how dangerous these leaks could be, and how now the utility isn’t accepting responsibility for their contractors’ work, and finally, how they’re now *gouging *their consumers.

If they aired it, I bet you’d get a reaaaal quick response.

Later at 6 on City News:

Is your house in danger of a massive gas explosion? Florida City Gas does not seem to care, and they want to charge you for the explosion as well!

<cut to stock footage of a house blowing up>

Don’t waste time arguing with them about liability.

It’s likely that the additional amount they are charging you for the leaked gas is within the limit of the local Small Claims Court. So sue them, win the case, and use their money to pay their bill.

Have records of your bill for the same months in previous years to illustrate the amount of leaked gas, and temperature records for those months.

“Well sir/madam, your meter will be on the front lawn in 5 minutes, I suggest you send somebody by to pick it up”

Its a public utility, so there should be some oversight, but in reality, they’re going to stick it to you.

Read the bill and all that good stuff, you should be able to dispute a charge and still receive service.

If you have to, pay it with a credit card and then dispute the charge. The CC companies are bigger than the local gas company, you may not win, but you’ll at least piss them off.

It really sucks when you are being screwed by somebody and you have no choice but to still deal with them, besides swapping over to a different fuel source and all the costs associated with that.

Be the squeaky wheel, BBB, they’ll still get their A++ rating but you might get some satisfaction(BBB is useless as for actual rating, nothing ever sticks).