Albany - The Georgia Public Service Commission says utilities under its control can't disconnect customers if the weather forecast calls for temperatures of at least 98 or a heat index of 101.
The ruling is actually a copy of a policy already in effect at Georgia Power, which is the only regulated electric utility in the state. Albany's Water, gas and Light Commission doesn't have a written policy in place but is working on one that will stop utility cutoffs when the heat index reaches 100.
That's what WG&L did this summer for customers when we had a record breaking heat wave. Laurie Farkas said, "We just didn't want anyone to get ill or a child to get sick so we felt like it was a real prudent measure to take."
Jay Smith of Georgia Power said, "We don't want them to be in danger and having the rule takes the burden off of us to arbitrarily decide we'll, it's kind of hot today, but not really hot, so we've been doing it for years."
WG&L and Georgia Power also have policies in place during the winter months when temperatures dip near freezing.