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Archives for November 2016

National Grid says “called and reached voicemail”…

This is a bit of a rant, only because I am still pissed off. I’ve written to my customer service rep and my customer service rep’s boss, called National Grid support several times to find out who else could be contacted, wrote a tweet, wrote a review at the Better Business Bureau.

Here’s the thing. I have a house with a brand new furnace. The process is first they remove the old furnace. This starts a period where the house no longer has heat. This happened Monday. Then there is an inspection. That’s Tuesday. Still no heat. Once the inspection is complete you can call for a meter set. This was all done. The meter set appointment was for today. Third day without heat. In New England. In November.

On calling National Grid the appointment is an “all day appointment”. But they do say that what will happen is that the installer will call 15 minutes before showing up. Ok then. That I can do.

I received no phone call. I was pulling my iPhone out and checking for any indication there was a call of any kind and no such call occurred. At 3PM I call the service line. The tech left a report that he called at 9:40 AM, reached voicemail, and then went by and no one was there.

Here’s the thing. An iPhone records every call. Missed, voicemail, whatever, it’s network traffic and there is in my experience ALWAYS a record of a call. It may show up after the fact, but if the call was made it shows. There was no call made. At all. There is no such thing as a call that disappears especially when it was specifically reported that the call reached voicemail.

So I am basically being blamed for not answering the phone, for not being a conscientious consumer, and yet I know for a fact no call was actually made to my phone. The installer may have misdialed, he may have not called at all, but what he said, that he called me and reached my voicemail, DID. NOT. HAPPEN.

If National Grid had said at the outset “we find that people are better off staying at the house the entire day until the tech shows up because our people are somewhat incompetent when it comes to using a telephone” I would have been at the house. And annoyed but not pissed. And I’d have the goddamned meter in place.

—spence

ADDED 10 Novemerber 2016

National Grid showed up today at 8:40 AM after calling 20 minutes before arrival, and installed the meter. The phone call came through without an issue.

National Grid also replied to my tweet about this, and my service rep responded as well.

There is something about being stuck without heat in late fall that is unnerving. My biggest concern was that tonight, when the temperature dips to 30 degrees, the house would still be without heat. That did not happen.

It’s a measure of how much the iPhone and similar designs have changed how things work. Before 2007, “I called and reached voicemail” would have been an untraceable event. You’d have to accept it, there would be no way to verify your cell phone had not dropped off the network. Now we have videos as civic responsibility, you can take a picture of that business card and have it on file, you can fax things with your phone, and the phone gives an accurate record of call activity, even on missed calls. It’s all network.