A powerful sticker shock
SCE&G is seeking rate increases for electricity and natural gas customers. Those requests to the S.C. Public Service Commission are enough to steam some of the power company’s customers.
So how heated up would you get if your electric bill for May was more than 13,800 times what it was for April?
Fortunately, Kristin Harriger, a single mom in Abilene Texas, took that sticker shock in stride.
She had figured the total May power tab for her small house from Potentia Energy would be, as usual for this time of year, in the $100 range.
Instead, it was $1,381,783.92 (if that’s too many digits for you to compute, it comes to nearly $1.4 million).
Yet Ms. Harriger told the Abilene Reporter-News that she laughed it off at first, assuming it was a joke. She even texted photos of the bill to friends.
When she saw the warning of a $66,000 late fee if the bill weren’t paid on time, though, she also sent an image of the bill to the Dallas-based utility company. She said Potenta quickly assured her that it would correct the blunder, which it blamed on “either computer error or human error.”
Ms. Harriger added: “I’ve been pretty calm about it. I mean, I’ve seen medical bills higher than that. I’m just glad I opened the bill and not my father, who has a heart condition.”
And we’re just glad there are still enough humans in charge to correct computer errors.
Or is that the other way around?