Vulnerable Consumers & calling 111 during a power outage
In this article
During a power outage you may not be able to call 111 from your landline because it relies on power to work. This is the case for all landlines using either Fibre or Fixed Wireless, and all our Home Line Plus Copper connections (if you’ve got a Home Line Basic Copper connection this can still work with no power, but please check your phone device doesn’t require power too).
If you qualify and are registered on our Vulnerable Consumers Register, we will arrange to provide you with a mobile phone or alternative means of contacting 111 in an emergency. This will be provided at no extra cost to you.
This initiative is driven by the Commerce Commission 111 Contact Code, which requires us to let relevant customers know that their landline service may not work during a power outage and what they can do to protect themselves. Under the Code we must provide registered Vulnerable Consumers an alternative means to contact 111.
What is an alternative means of contacting 111 emergency services during a power outage?
We suggest you should always keep a mobile phone to be used during a power outage. Remember to keep it fully charged and place it in an easily accessible location for quick access. Installing an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) will also protect your telecommunications services in the event of a power outage
Do I, or someone I know, qualify as a Vulnerable Consumer?
To qualify as a 2degrees Vulnerable Consumer under the 111 Contact Code you must:
- Be a consumer of a retail landline service with 2degrees; and
- Demonstrate you are at particular risk of requiring the 111 emergency service due to health, safety or disability reasons; and
- Not have a mobile (on any provider) that can be used as an alternative at home or an alternative power source; and
- Not have an alternate power source or another means for contacting the 111 emergency service from your landline premises that can be operated for an eight hour period in the event of a power outage.
How do I, or someone I know, apply to be a Vulnerable Consumer?
Here’s how to nominate yourself or someone you know as a Vulnerable Consumer:
- Download our Vulnerable Consumer application form
- Print the form and fill in the relevant details. Please avoid any sensitive medical information.
- Scan your completed form and email it back to email@example.com
- You can also post the form back to us at this address:
Attention: 111 Vulnerable Consumer
Two Degrees New Zealand Limited
PO Box 8355
To make things even easier, you could also drop off your completed form at any of our retail stores. We’ll manage the rest.
Please note, to fill in the form you must be listed as an authority on the relevant 2degrees landline account.
What happens if I’m a Vulnerable Consumer?
If your application to be a Vulnerable Consumer is approved, we will aim to provide you with either a mobile phone, or alternative means of contacting 111 that can operate for at least 8 hours during a power outage. This will be provided at no cost to you. Telecommunications providers have until 1 August 2021 to make this support available to Vulnerable Consumers.
Don’t worry, we won’t be denying any customer our landline services on the basis that we know or suspect they are, or may become, a Vulnerable Consumer.
Disputes and complaints
if you have questions or concerns about the information provided or if you wish to make a complaint, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you remain dissatisfied with the outcome of your case, then you can refer your complaint to the Telecommunications Dispute Resolutions Scheme (TDR). TDR provides a free and independent service for residential and small business customers and engages with 2degrees to find a resolution on your behalf. The account holder can raise a dispute with the TDR on their own behalf or that of another member of the same residential household.
If you believe 2degrees is actively being negligent in its responsibilities under the 111 Contact Code you can contact the Commerce Commission directly at email@example.com. Please note their primary course of action will be to refer the matter to the TDR.