FortisBC set to support British Columbia during COVID-19 outbreak
Mar 16, 2020
Surrey, BC - As businesses and government take additional steps to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus COVID-19, FortisBC has taken several steps to protect the health and safety of our customers and employees while maintaining service levels and responding quickly to any emergency or outage situations.
First and foremost, we are working to keep our employees healthy. We’ve asked all employees to self-isolate if they feel any symptoms associated with COVID-19 and, if those symptoms worsen, to seek medical attention. To increase social distancing at our offices, we’re organizing ways for employees to work from home when possible to decrease the number of people at our office facilities. We’ve also asked our employees to cancel any in-person meetings with vendors for the time being and limit the number of people in any face-to-face meetings.
To assist in containment, we have also cancelled any non-essential work related travel for our staff and, for any staff travelling for personal or work reasons, will be asking them to self-isolate for two weeks upon their return to ensure they have not contracted the virus. We’ve also closed our offices to public visits for the time being and meeting with more vendors and contractors via teleconference rather than in person.
As an essential service provider, some of our work cannot be done remotely. Our operational staff working in the field will continue regularly scheduled work to ensure we are able to deliver energy safely and reliably. We’ve taken a close look at our field staff levels across the province and have plans in place to maintain service levels and respond to outages or emergencies promptly across different scenarios. We’re also managing our supply chain to ensure we have a healthy inventory of critical materials and supplies required to do our work on a day to day basis.
We know that the COVID-19 outbreak has affected many of our customers’ livelihoods. Our customer service centre is available to help any customer who is facing financial difficulty for any reason and will help tailor a solution to fit their individual situation. Our customer service representatives can be reached at 1-866-436-7847 for electricity and 1-888-224-2710 for natural gas.
We’re supporting essential service providers and are in regular contact with other utilities and all levels of government to ensure that we’re working together to support British Columbians. Our people are prepared and we have plans in place to deal with situations which may arise over the coming weeks. We know the best service we can offer is to continue providing safe, reliable energy through these challenging times and beyond.
Manager, Corporate Communications