OGDEN — Large utility companies in Northern Utah say their services are in good shape and won’t be turned off for customers who may face economic challenges during the coronavirus pandemic.
Dominion Energy, Rocky Mountain Power and Ogden City all say they won’t cut services for customers who may be unable to pay as fallout from COVID-19 continues.
According to a press release from Rocky Mountain Power, the company is temporarily suspending nonpayment disconnections to support the state of emergency response to the virus.
“With many in our communities potentially needing to self-isolate or work from home, the company understands the importance of uninterrupted electric service,” the press release reads. “The company will continue to evaluate other ways to support our customers for the duration of this quickly evolving public health emergency.”
As for Utah’s other big utility, Dominion Energy officials say they’ve also suspended all service disconnections. The energy company will also reconnect residential customers whose service had been shut off prior to the pandemic.
“People rely on us to meet critical needs, and they should not have to worry about losing service during this critical time,” reads a Dominion press release.
Ogden City says they won’t shut off water during the emergency, as long as water service customers make arrangements to pay when they can. Ogden residents who are worried about paying their city utility bill should contact the billing department at 801-629-8321 to discuss payment arrangements.
Although payment arrangements will provide temporary relief during the period that the COVID-19 virus is deemed an emergency, customers will be required to pay in full for all water used on the account within a reasonable time after the emergency passes, according to a city news release.
Ogden City Marketing and Communications Manager Mike McBride said the city is fielding numerous calls from citizens concerned about the safety of the city’s water supply.
“We’re hearing a ton about water right now,” McBride said.
McBride said water delivered to homes and businesses is completely safe for all uses, which applies to conditions associated with both the virus and the March 18 earthquake.
All of Ogden’s culinary water supply complies with federal and state water quality requirements for disinfection. Culinary water delivered to homes and businesses is treated with chlorine to remove or kill pathogens, including viruses. Both the Environmental Protection Agency and the Utah Department of Drinking Water have stressed that the COVID-19 virus is particularly susceptible to disinfection and standard water treatment procedures. There is no need to take any additional treatment actions, like boiling water, before it’s used.
All major water system infrastructure was inspected after the earthquake and found to be in good condition, the water utility reported.