Power bill shock across Middlemount forces investigation
ARRIVING home from holidays a week ago, the last thing Megan Thomas expected to see was an Ergon Energy bill for $1606.65.
The Middlemount resident couldn't believe her power bill had shot up from $142.15, her bill in the the previous quarter.
Megan said she and her family had been away for six weeks of the billing period, unplugging household appliances before they left.
"There was no way a family of two adults and a one-year-old could use that much power," she said.
"I was quite shocked and I had a feeling there was more to it."
Megan contacted Ergon Energy and was told by a consultant the high bill could be the result of faulty appliances.
But she didn't accept this explanation.
A community Facebook page revealed dozens of other Middlemount residents with unusually high bills had been told the same thing.
"I knew this couldn't be right as many of these people had been away from town for holidays and the chances of us all having faulty appliances was very unlikely," Megan said.
"There were a few people who were just going to pay it (the bill)... but I felt like something had to be done."
Megan contacted Queensland's Energy and Water Ombudsman and Ergon Energy, requesting an investigation, which has since been undertaken.
Ergon has told Megan the error was caused by a contractor incorrectly reading Middlemount meters for a year.
The abnormally high bills were the result of the meters now being read correctly.
Megan said she was happy and relieved the issue had been resolved.
"I hope by bringing this to Ergon's attention it may stop it happening again."