Theft of utilities, tampering with gas meters will not be tolerated

30 Jun 2016

Theft of utilities will not be tolerated

We thank Mr Darren Chan Keng Leong for his letter "Deterrent sentences, better meters needed to stop gas fraud" (TODAY Voices, June 27). We agree with Mr Chan that theft of utilities and tampering with gas meters must not be tolerated. Theft of utilities results in other consumers having to pay more. Tampering of meters may also possibly disrupt gas supply and pose safety risks.

The Energy Market Authority (EMA) will work with SP PowerGrid and City Gas to review the locks used to deter tampering at gas meter installations. City Gas and SP PowerGrid will also continue to educate commercial and industrial establishments on gas safety, and carry out inspections to deter theft of utilities and tampering with gas meters.

Members of the public who know of persons or establishments tampering with their gas meter installations or dishonestly consuming gas should report the matter to the EMA at 6835 8000 or ema_enquiry@ema.gov.sg. All information provided will be kept strictly confidential. We will take firm action against anyone who tampers with their gas meters and tries to dishonestly consume gas.

Mohd Rafid Bin Ibrahim
Director, Gas Industry Regulation Department
Energy Market Authority

Deterrent sentences, better meters needed to stop gas fraud

27 June 2016

I refer to the report “Paradise Group fined S$530,000 for gas fraud” (June 25).

It is a cause for concern that the popular restaurant chain resorted to tampering with gas meters to avoid payments. Such fraudulent acts must not be tolerated in resource-scarce Singapore.

This incident also shows that the locks on gas meters can be easily tampered with, and that a review of the device is needed. The design of the locks should be designed to be accessible only to authorised gas suppliers. If private contractors are found to have helped in such illegal and criminal practices, action should be taken against them.

Theft of utilities such as gas should not be tolerated, as it puts unnecessary costs on both the suppliers and consumers. Paradise Group should be making restitution to City Gas as they have not only betrayed the trust of their consumers but also caused damage to the gas valves by tampering with them.

The authorities should also look into meting out deterrent sentences on the management executives of companies involved in similar incidents. Doing so would send a strong signal to other food establishments that it is a serious offence to engage in such acts of dishonesty.

Food establishments need to be educated and informed about the safe usage of gas. City Gas and SP PowerGrid should carry out more inspections to ensure that public safety is not compromised and such incidents do not occur again.

Darren Chan Keng Leong
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