New research highlights the massive cost of energy theft – but most people are unaware how it hits them in the pocket.
Research released by Echo Managed Services and the Grosvenor Services Group has identified that around 80% of people in the UK are unaware that energy theft hits them directly in the pocket.
Surprisingly, gas and electricity theft in the UK adds an average £20 extra to every household bill each year, together costing innocent bill payers millions, according to the research report.
What would you do with an extra £20 per bill every year?
If you spot energy theft, stop it
When people steal gas and electricity, it’s not only costing you, but it can put you and people around you at risk of grave danger. When someone tampers with a gas or electricity meter to steal energy, it can lead to shocks, fires, explosions, gas leaks or carbon monoxide poisoning.
17th – 23rd September marks the annual Gas Safety Week, and we’re launching a campaign to highlight the cost of energy theft and educate people about the crime.
We know that most people believe that energy theft is wrong and should be stopped, but we need more people to come forward with information that they may have.
That’s why we’re urging people to be ‘Stoppers not just Spotters’. If you spot energy theft in your day-to-day life, you should stop it. Report it to stayenergysafe, 100% anonymously. It takes minutes to do, and it could save lives.
Serious gas risk in Leicester
An incident back in May 2018 saw 52-year-old Nadeem Mughal jailed for three years after putting his neighbours’ lives at risk when he tampered with his gas meter. He risked blowing up a block of flats by twice tampering with his gas meter, causing two significant gas leaks. The second gas leak was described as “an imminent risk of an explosion which could have destroyed the whole building”, and could have seriously harmed his 20 neighbours.
Would you turn a blind eye?
Speaking about the campaign, which is being supported by Gas Safe Register, Roger Holden, Director at Crimestoppers, said: “Energy theft is one of those crimes that people don’t think affects them, but that could not be further from the truth.
“A tampered meter creates a huge safety risk, that can lead to an explosion or fire. Imagine it was your neighbour stealing energy – would you turn a blind eye?
“Not only are the meter cheaters stealing energy, but they are stealing our money too. We’re paying an extra £20 on every bill each year.
“This is why we’re asking for the public’s help – to be ‘stoppers not spotters.’ If you know someone tampering with a meter, then we want to know about it.
What you can do to stop energy theft
Is someone meter tampering in your street, at your work, or in the pub? If you become aware of people stealing gas or electricity anywhere, or boasting about it, stay safe. You can contact stayenergysafe on 0800 023 2777. Or you can fill out a secure anonymous online form here. Crimestoppers guarantees 100% anonymity for everyone who contacts them.