Finance EnergyAust cops $12 million life support fine

EnergyAust cops $12 million life support fine

power companies life support
EnergyAustralia must register customers on life support equipment including dialysis machines. Photo: Getty
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Failing to safeguard power supplies for life-saving equipment has cost EnergyAustralia a record $12 million fine.

Thousands of people were exposed to potentially deadly risks by the energy provider which is obligated to register customers on life support equipment including ventilators, oxygen concentrators and dialysis machines.

National laws also require it notifies distributors about customers using life saving equipment, much of which cannot properly function without power leading to catastrophic consequences for users.

EnergyAustralia admitted it failed thousands of customers over life support obligations dating back to 2018, prompting the Federal Court’s record fine on Thursday.

The Australian Energy Regulator, which brought the case, hailed the fine as the largest ever for breaches of the national energy retail law.

“The $12 million penalty imposed by the court sends a strong message to all retailers and distributors that they must comply with their life support responsibilities under the law,” AER chairwoman Clare Savage said.

“Life support obligations are critical to ensure that customers receive important protections under the law, including protections relating to continuity of energy supply and sufficient notice of any planned interruptions.”

The regulator would not hesitate to take action in case of such serious non-compliance, she said.