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Who owns what - your guide on cut outs, meters, fuses and who is responsible

Who owns what - your guide on cut outs, meters, fuses and who is responsible

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Userlevel 1

Thanks @Tim_OVO . I think next on my list is to contact the HSE. As of next Tuesday it will be 28 days since reporting an observed B11 issue with my supply head. Having suggested before on several occasions that my electrician is well placed to speak about the installation and been brushed off, I don’t want to waste my time further. As always you have my contact details on file if you have any solutions to propose.

Userlevel 7

Had a good read of this, thanks for posting and sharing. That’s to you both. It’s valuable to have this online for reference. But that doesn’t matter as much at the moment. You, we, need to make sure you’re safe and that correct processes have happened. It’s certainly not too much to ask for in this case.

 
I won’t discuss your account, @killicrankie here. For your privacy but also due to my responsibilities under GDPR. But you can certainly keep us updated here if you wish. What I would suggest is we keep in mind the lack of certainty. And the existence of subjectivity, from engineers and professional electricians and everyone in between. People have made observations and we don’t yet know the facts 100% ….. yet. 
 

So let’s confirm them. @killicrankie if you haven’t already, please ring our support line, who will be able to put in motion a checking of the engineer report and if need be a conversation between someone and the engineer. The next port of call is a DNO conversation, probably best done by OVO. I might be wrong, (caveat) but that puts my mind at ease a bit. Hopefully you agree @killicrankie - 0330 303 5063. We’re open from 8am Friday morning.

Userlevel 1

Certainly, here it is. Though now you mention it, I’ve no video of him removing it from the enclosure. This does, however, suggest he opened the enclosure and examined it.

I do understand the learning process, and indeed Ovo have quickly adapted some of their processes for a Covid world with new compliance checks at booking of appointments. It does seem that there’s resistance to change here and I have to say it’s one of the most frustrating and time consuming issues I’ve ever experienced.

 

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

Is there any chance of you posting that photo here please @killicrankie ?

There are now three possible issues in play:

  1: there is a fused Neutral; category B11

  2a. the fuse rating is 60A (which is possibly due to the Feed being 16mm² or less)

  2b. the fuse rating is below 60A, in which case category C03 is actually correct

  3: the fuse carrier contains asbestos; category C11 applies

Whatever the MOCOPA document and OVO’s Training stipulate, there’s no reason why these shouldn’t be altered if needs be. Isn’t it because of such feedback that we continually revise safety documents anyway?

Userlevel 1

Just reread the MOCOPA agreement. Under the category C preamble it does mention not telling the householder as it will create an “unreasonable expectation of DB intervention”. Reporting is clearly manadatory, but this suggests that in some cases nothing will be done.

Userlevel 1

Hi @Transparent , thanks for your detailed reply. I did look at the MOCOPA agreement and saw that in the case of an identified B11, all work should stop immediately, the householder informed and the DNO notified. 

I assumed that it was optional as Ovo’s customer service guys said that I could choose to contact the DNO and ask them to do something about the 60A rating of the service and by the fact that the MOCOPA agreement does not require the engineer to inform the householder, which he did not. I guess I’ve interporetted that one incorrectly.

I’m afraid I don’t understand the logic behind removing the requirement to report a more serious error. It seems odd that not following procedure (assuming my electrician is correct and per the photo of the asbestos fuse I’ve just provided to Ovo customer support) that this should lower the category of fault.

It seems to me that it’s not only at the expense of a higher level fault, but at the expense of the customer in this case.

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

I think @killicrankie that we should ask @Tim_OVO to run this past one of OVO’s Staff who train their SMETS installers. (They have a high-quality in-house training suite).

The Faults and Non-Compliances section of the MOCOPA Agreement gives a hierarchy to help engineers decide which code to assign to an installation where there is more than one fault present on the DB (ie a fault that is the responsibility of the DNO).

As the OVO Installer has completed the meter installation, he may not now report a Code-B, even though it is clear to us that having a fused neutral is indeed Code B-11. See the rules at the top of Page-4.

Category C03 is the one which most closely matches the required fault-report code in that it informs the DNO that they will need to replace the Service Fuse assembly in its entirety.

I can’t see anywhere in the document which suggests that a Category C is optional for the DNO. It will get flagged as a Asset that fails the required specification, and must still be attended to.

There remains the question as to why OVO’s Engineer proceeded to install the Smart Meters despite there being a fused-neutral. Doing so has removed the requirement for another site visit, but denied him the possibility of notifying your DNO of a Category-B fault. It has saved the additional costs, but has it done so at the expense of a higher level of safety warning being issued?

That’s something which OVO needs to evaluate. And that’s why this would seem to be a good example of a situation which could be brought up in the Training Dept. Let’s see what @Tim_OVO thinks.

I’m sure we’d all like to hear when your DNO attends on-site and whether they choose to comment on the Fault Category which has been assigned.

Userlevel 1

Just a heads up. I definitely wouldn’t recommend booking in a smart meter replacement appointment to get an issue like this solved. We’re frankly no closer to a solution.

I now have an electrician reporting a B11 issue (which needs to be dealt with in 28 days) and Ovo reporting a C03 issue (which is optional to fix).

This means two experts who disagree but are not allowed (by processes) to discuss it and agree who has responsibility for the fix. As such, I can’t go ahead and get my EICR completed without 1) changing energy supplier or 2) changing electrician.

Seems bonkers, and as the issue is closed from Ovo’s point of view, it’s back on me.

Userlevel 1

Hi @Tim_OVO , bad news I'm afraid. We didn't get it done, right or otherwise. As far as I am aware nothing was done about the cutout, just a smart meter installed. Let me know what you want me to do to get this fixed. Only a few days left of the 28 allowed.

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

@Tim_OVO - if the suggestion we’re discussing here is implemented, then it’s up to the DNO to view the photo of the Distribution Board and decide if they’re happy with it being classified as Category-A. It shouldn’t matter whether the photo and suggested classification has come through an OVO Engineer working to the MOCOPA scheme, or directly from a customer such as @killicrankie.

 

And also, can you please ensure you grab a copy of the two PDFs we’re referring to in this Topic. If either of them get withdrawn or moved from their current location, we’ll need to upload them somewhere else on the OVO site in order to keep the Topic “live”!

Userlevel 1

Hi @Tim_OVO  - the visit is tomorrow. Hopefully, we’ll get to the next step quickly and if the DNO is quick, we might make it inside 28 days. I’ll let you know.

Userlevel 7

A two-visit approach means twice the wait to resolve a situation. It seems to me that DNO engineers, Ovo engineers and qualified electricians should all be reasonably well suited to spot these situations and “get right” the solution and most importantly get it fixed as soon as possible.

 

It’s a good point I must say. I’m playing devil’s advocate when I counter btw. I’m not privy to the logic behind the process at all. But perhaps if they allow an electrician (or a photo to a supplier) be the judge of an emergency, and the DNO visit very quickly as a result. and it is NOT a category A, maybe another category A visit has been delayed, with possibly lethal consequences….

 

Secondly, especially where we are at the moment with the pandemic, we’re looking at two engineer’s appointments for the customer, with two 6-hour visit slots to manage and two visits into the home presenting extra contacts for the homeowner and engineers alike.

 

 This is a very good point, and I’m certain the process wasn’t created with COVID social distancing in mind. How did things go yesterday, @killicrankie ?

 

@Transparent this bit of content is fantastic. It’s now online for OVO members and non members. It will have value for months and years to come, so great job getting this posted! Where are we at with our other planned tutorials? Pictures but not much text as it stands. I’ll be waiting to support when this gets filled out more, so let me know! 

Userlevel 1

Thanks @Tim_OVO . Let’s not forget the customer experience in all of this. 

Firstly, there’s the risk of a potentially dangerous situation. A two-visit approach means twice the wait to resolve a situation. It seems to me that DNO engineers, Ovo engineers and qualified electricians should all be reasonably well suited to spot these situations and “get right” the solution and most importantly get it fixed as soon as possible.

Secondly, especially where we are at the moment with the pandemic, we’re looking at two engineer’s appointments for the customer, with two 6-hour visit slots to manage and two visits into the home presenting extra contacts for the homeowner and engineers alike.

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

I think @killicrankie still has a valid point. A customer’s photo of the current installation is a great deal cheaper than sending a meter installer to site, especially in cases when it’s already known that the DNO will be required to do work first!

There’s a list of DNO contacts on the last page of the Cut-out Types and Ratings Guidance which I mentioned above. We could improve it by finding out a more precise email address to where a photo could be sent. But equally, that information will gradually age here on the Forum.

Userlevel 7

Hi @Tim_OVO , Given we are saying why can’t the DNO accept the say-so of the hosueholder or an electrician, why can’t Ovo do the same?

 

I understand the logic behind this, but I think suppliers and DNOs will insist on visual confirmation before assigning priorities for work. It’s important to get right!

 

@Transparent shall we add bit for who to contact (i.e suppliers, electricians, DNOs ), and link out for each one so our members can easily find their/our contact details? 

Userlevel 1

Hi @Tim_OVO , Given we are saying why can’t the DNO accept the say-so of the hosueholder or an electrician, why can’t Ovo do the same?

Userlevel 7

Hi @Transparent can you help me so we can strip out the specifics of this post, making it more applicable to users who want to know who’s responsible for what, and how they can get the help they need. We’ll need to remove bits referencing killicrankie’s issue. If you’re happy for me to do this, just let me know! I don’t know if you’ll have edit rights at this point. 

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