March 2018 Back Page – Are Your Electronics Protected?

Posted: March 1, 2018

Late last year, several major storms swept across the state. Electric systems were impacted in many communities, including several served by AVEC. AVEC’s linemen and generation technicians traveled from community to community, responding to outages ranging from entire communities to individual members whose services were damaged by flying debris.

In the weeks following the storms, AVEC received insurance claims from members in some of the impacted communities. In some cases, it was reported that an appliance had failed several weeks after an outage event. In some cases, we were told a device had “exploded” or “popped” after an outage.

AVEC maintains high levels of liability and property insurance to provide protection against damages of all kinds. AVEC consumers are protected against damage caused by AVEC’s actions or negligence. There is no coverage for items damaged due to natural events such as storms—because there is nothing AVEC can do to prevent such events. Following is language from the tariff:

“The Utility will not be liable for any injury, casualty, or damage resulting in any way from the supply or use of electricity or from the presence or operation of the Utility’s structures, equipment, wires, conduit, appliances, or devices on the customer’s premises except injuries or damages resulting from the negligence of the Utility in matters within its reasonable control.

“It is the customer’s responsibility to provide suitable protective devices for the equipment on the customer’s premises. The customer is cautioned that due to economic considerations, Utility power is furnished by relatively small, largely unattended power plants and power quality may not be as good as on larger, manned systems. Where the customer requires a degree of regulation of the electric service greater than that furnished by the Utility, the customer will be responsible for obtaining, installing, and maintaining the required regulating and suitable protective equipment when utilizing equipment subject to damage by voltage or frequency excursions which may develop on these systems.

“Surge protection and power conditioning should be used for all sensitive electronic equipment. Sensitive electronic equipment includes, but is not limited to, personal computers and all related computer equipment, entertainment equipment such as televisions and stereo equipment, and heating appliances such as monitor and Toyostoves. Sensitive electronic equipment damage claims for equipment that is not protected by auxiliary devices will not be reviewed.”

Electronic appliances such as televisions, computers and Toyostoves are expensive and difficult to repair. Protect your devices appropriately and consider whole-home surge protection. Check your home insurance policy to make sure your appliances are covered. AVEC insurance will not cover damages that are not a direct result of AVEC actions.