British Gas complaints soar

The number of British Gas customers complaining about its service has quadrupled in the last two years, according to consumer watchdog Energywatch. The gas and electricity consumer body says British Gas customers are also three times more likely to have problems than people with other suppliers.

The number of complaints received from British Gas customers went up from 20,072 between September 2005 and February 2006 to 80,541 between March 2007 and August 2007. NPower received the second-highest number of complaints with 13,960 between March and August 2007.

Energywatch says it had to change the way it reports company performance to highlight the “sheer scale” of customers who needed help dealing with their energy supplier.

It is now publishing reports on the total number of cases – including complaints, inquiries and empowerments – in which the consumer is transferred to the supplier’s own complaint handling team.

An Energywatch spokesman says: “Despite signs of improvement by British Gas over the summer, the company is still in a league of its own when it comes to providing poor customer service.”

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