We are working together with E.ON to tackle energy theft and meter tampering in your area.

What is energy theft?

Energy theft is when someone uses electricity and/or gas without the authority of their supplier and tampers with the energy meter to prevent it from recording accurately. It is often mistaken as a low level crime; however it is occasionally used in organised crime networks.

Crimestoppers and E.ON together against energy theft

Crimestoppers and E.ON together against energy theft

What are the signs of energy theft?

Energy theft can lead to fire, explosions and loss, make yourself aware of the signs and what to look out for.

Gas

  • No meter, tubes or pipes direct to property.
  • Unable to see clearly the front of the meter or read the meter reading.
  • Meter reversed and facing the wall.
  • Damage to the meter.
  • Rubber tubes where pipes should be.
  • Meter appears to be in debt but gas is still available.

Electricity

  • No meter or cables from fusebox to mains.
  • Bottom cover of meter missing or whole meter cover missing.
  • Additional wires attached in or around meter or crocodile clips.
  • Cables on meter damaged or meter itself damaged.
  • Meter cover melting.
  • Any soot or burn marks around or on meter.
  • Meter appears to be in debt but electricity is still available.

Energy theft case study

A mother, living with her three young children and her elderly, ailing father moved into their new home and went about their usual lives.

The gas and electric appeared normal and as she had been a customer of E.ON at her previous address she switched the electricity and gas supply to E.ON. Unknown to the family, the gas supply had been capped prior to moving in but the meter was left installed. As the appliances worked she continued to use the gas as normal.

After less than six months, there was an electrical fire fuelled by gas which resulted in large amounts of smoke. The mother was able to get her father and all three of the children out of the property by handing them out of the window to a neighbour in the street before escaping herself. Thankfully no one was hurt in the incident and little damage to the property due to the quick reactions of the mother and the emergency services.

Investigations determined that both meters on the property had been tampered with and an electrical explosion had been fuelled by leaking gas from the illegal gas connection.

Records show it is highly unlikely that the new family knew anything about the meter tampering. It’s more likely that one of the previous occupiers at the property tampered with the meters, leaving behind an extremely dangerous situation which could have had more serious consequences. The family was left without gas for over two weeks as a result of the incident.

E.ON responded by swiftly sending technicians to the site, who removed and disconnected the tampered, dangerous meter. The family’s home is now fitted with safer, pre-payment meters, and there have been no further incidents.

Find out more about our partnership with E.ON.