Energy ombudsman: Complaints against energy suppliers up 224% in 2014

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Complaints against energy suppliers in the first three months of 2014 have risen a staggering 224% up on the same time last year it has emerged.

The figures from the energy sector's ombudsman show complaints trebled to 10,638 from a figure of 3,277 during the same period last year.

With the latest statistics showing the level of complaints in 2014 are already up to two-thirds of last year's total complaints figure in the first quarter alone - there was a total of 17,960 complaints in 2013 - the figures do not bode well for the energy industry.

Chief Energy Ombudsman, Lewis Shand Smith, said: "Consumer frustration and dissatisfaction is something that we hear about every day, and we welcome any attempts by Ofgem to make the energy market fairer.

"With energy complaints trebling in the first quarter of this year and problems relating to billing the greatest concern, increased transparency is something that should be addressed."

A spokeswoman for the representative of the energy industry, Energy UK, said most customers had no problems with their energy supplier, but offered advice for those who do.

She said: "If a customer has any concerns relating to their bills, they should contact their provider as soon as they can, and if possible have an up-to-date meter reading to hand which will ensure their bill is as accurate as possible.

"Energy companies work very hard to resolve problems and most complaints are fixed within a few working days with no more than a phone call."

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