15 Oct 2009

Lobby group against gas leak callout fees

9:21 am on 15 October 2009

A consumer lobby group claims fees for emergency gas leak callouts that turn out to be false alarms are a rip-off and could deter people from reporting them.

Some of the country's big gas companies, including Contact Energy and Nova Energy, charge up to $200 if no leak is found or the fault is with the customer's gas pipes or appliance.

The Domestic Energy Users Network says the fees are a disincentive to reporting a leak.

Contact Energy says it receives about 4500 reports of gas leaks per year: about half are false alarms.

It says the charges cover only the cost of sending out an engineer.