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News : Irish Water Customers Get Texts Asking Them to Call and Pay their Bill
Dublin, Ireland, Aug 25, 2015 -- The move, which has been criticised by the political opposition, comes after it was revealed the embattled company is now cold-calling customers who have so far failed to pay their first two bills.
A spokeswoman for Irish Water confirmed that "depending on the contact information we have" some customers have received text messages recently.
The texts ask the customer to pick up the phone and contact Irish Water.
The text messages, which have been sent to tens of thousands of customers, advise them to call the Irish Water customer care number or to access their account via the company's website.
The spokeswoman added the phone number provided is the standard Irish Water customer support line which is a lo-call number.
She said text messages are going out on a phased basis and only to those who provided a mobile number when registering with the utility.
The company insisted texting customers and asking them to call back is "not a money saving exercise".
Irish Water also confirmed that it is willing to engage with customers to enter into a "payment plan", starting from €5 per week, to pay back the outstanding charges.
"We have begun to text customers who have an overdue balance on their account. This is part of the reminder process that Irish Water has started during the second billing cycle as is normal," the spokeswoman confirmed.
She added: "We will contact customers in a range of ways depending on the contact information we have for them.
"Some customers will get a phone call, some will get a text and some will get a letter from us reminding them that their account is overdue and giving them information about ways to pay.
The company recently came under fire when it emerged households were now being called by call centre staff.
However Irish Water has defended the move, insisting it is normal practise for all utility companies.
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About Irish Water Company:
Irish Water Ltd. is a water utility company in Ireland. The company was created by the Irish Government through the Water Services Act (2013), which formally created Irish Water as a subsidiary of Bord Gáis, to provide "safe, clean and affordable water and waste water services" to water users in Ireland. Water and wastewater services were previously provided by local authorities in Ireland.
Published: Wednesday, August 26, 2015