Reminder: Utility Disconnection Ban During Extreme Heatwave

Posted on 07/07/23

Arizona is in a 10‐day forecasted stretch of severe heat warnings. Corporation
Commissioner Lea Márquez Peterson is reminding Arizonans that regulated electric utilites are forbidden from disconnecting customers due to late payment, non‐payment, or accumulated debt during extreme weather conditions.

Regulated utility companies in Arizona like Arizona Public Service Company, Tucson Electric Power Company, and UNS Electric, Inc. must decide if they will suspend disconnections from June 1 to October 15 or if the forecasted temperature exceeds 95‐degrees Fahrenheit. With Valley temperatures predicted to rise above 115‐degrees, customers concerned about disconnections should reach out to their electricity providers.

Commissioner Márquez Peterson emphasizes the importance of reaching out for assistance if needed. She states, “In these extreme weather conditions, the safety and well‐being of every Arizonan is my foremost concern. As we navigate this heatwave together, I urge customers facing difficulties with their bills to contact their service providers. Various assistance programs are available to those who qualify.”

With the extreme heat hitting Ariziona the next several days there will be a spike in residential energy consumption, leading to higher energy bills. The increase in air conditioning usage and the associated high demand for cooling are substantial factors in overall utility costs. The Commission invites all Arizonans to take advantage of energy efficiency programs offered by their electricity providers and to practice voluntary energy conservation measures where feasible.

Here are some practical tips to reduce energy consumption during Arizona's sweltering summer months:

  • Keep curtains and blinds closed
  • Utilize fans for cooling
  • Limit use of high‐energy appliances during peak hours
  • Switch off lights and unplug appliances when not in use
  • Regularly change HVAC filters, per the manufacturer's recommendations
  • If possible, invest in smart thermostats and energy‐efficient appliances

For immediate relief, the Arizona Department of Health Services offers a map of cooling centers available throughout the state. Find the closest one to you here: Arizona Cooling Centers Map.

The Arizona Emergency Network has compiled a comprehensive list of recommendations for coping with extreme heat. See more at: Arizona Emergency Network Extreme Heat Guide.

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