Enbridge Gas' Response to COVID-19

A message from our president

Cynthia Hansen

Cynthia Hansen
Executive Vice President and President,
Gas Distribution & Storage,
Enbridge Inc.

This is a time unlike any other in recent memory, around the world and here at home in Ontario. I want you to know that the team here at Enbridge Gas is working hard to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, protect the health and safety of the public and our employees, and support our communities and customers. Here's what we're doing:

We're keeping Ontario families and businesses warm while preventing the spread of the virus

We've made some changes to ensure that Ontario families will continue to have heat and hot water, and businesses like hospitals and grocery stores will have the energy they need to provide the essential services we all rely on, now more than ever.

To keep people safe, employees whose roles allow them to work from home are doing so; those who can't work from home are practicing proper hygiene, maintaining physical distancing and not coming to work if they are not well or have had any risk of exposure. We've postponed some non-essential work like in-person energy conservation services. Where our essential work requires us to enter homes or businesses and on our construction sites, we’ve implemented enhanced protocols such as screening questions and augmented personal protective equipment, where needed, to ensure public and employee safety.

One thing that has not changed is our commitment to deliver reliable operations and excellent customer service. We have experience managing our operations through a large-scale crisis, and I want to assure you that we are prepared to get through this one.

We're supporting customers and communities

We understand that this is a particularly difficult time for customers, who may be facing unexpected financial challenges as a result of COVID-related work interruptions or slowdowns.

Our community partners, first responders and healthcare providers are doing amazing things in our communities. We're also here to support communities by advancing funds for food banks, social service agencies, mental health organizations, first responders and healthcare providers who provide relief to people most vulnerable to COVID-19's impacts.

We don't want anyone to worry about keeping their homes warm, or whether there will be enough hot water to take a shower or do the dishes. That's why we won't be disconnecting residential or small business partners for non-payment until Aug. 1, 2020. We also offer enhanced payment plans for customers who have concerns about their ability to pay their utility bill and to help avoid late payment fees. Information is available here:

We know our customers depend on us to safely and reliably provide the energy they need. On behalf of our 4,500 Enbridge Gas employees, I want you to know you can continue to count on us.

Cynthia Hansen
Executive Vice President and President, Gas Distribution & Storage, Enbridge Inc.


Frequently asked questions

We understand the uncertainty customers may be facing with the impact of COVID-19 on daily life. Below are answers to common questions.

What specific actions has Enbridge Gas taken to protect employees and the public?

Our health and safety teams are actively monitoring this situation and we have closely reviewed our pandemic and business continuity plans in light of COVID-19. We're following the latest guidance provided by public health officials and government authorities.

We're doing our part to help prevent the spread of the virus by practicing social distancing where possible, both for our team and our customers, while also maintaining safe and reliable operations by:

  • Placing strict limitations on business travel and cancelling large group meetings.
  • Implementing work-at-home plans for roles suited to working remotely.
  • Providing information to our employees on universal cold and flu precautions such as frequent hand washing and requiring them to stay at home if they feel unwell.
  • Implementing protocols for employees who enter customer homes and businesses for essential work such as emergency response including introducing pre-screening questions for customer visits and augmented PPE requirements where necessary. No Enbridge employee or contractor that is feeling ill or may have been exposed to any COVID-19 risk factors will conduct work in customer homes or businesses.
  • Augmenting existing work procedures on our construction sites to protect the health and safety of our communities, employees and contractors including site pre-screening, heightened disinfection practices, physical distancing, close-proximity work procedures when the work task cannot accommodate physical distancing, enhanced personal protective equipment and staggered work hours.

What work is Enbridge Gas continuing to undertake, and what work is being postponed?

Enbridge Gas will continue to respond to emergency calls such as gas leaks or calls from customers who do not have heat. We will also continue to undertake work that is needed to ensure we can reliably and safely deliver natural gas services to homes and businesses such as safety inspections, new service installations for homes or businesses pending occupancy or without heat, maintenance and emergency repairs to our natural gas system and essential construction projects. Additional work such as meter exchanges and some customer requested meter work have also resumed, where it is safe to do so. Where this work requires us to enter homes and businesses, we’ve implemented protocols to ensure public and employee safety including pre-screening questions for customer visits and augmented personal protective equipment requirements where necessary. No Enbridge Gas employee or contractor that is feeling ill or may have been exposed to any COVID-19 risk factors will conduct work in customer homes or businesses. Some in-person elements of our energy conservation programs continue to be postponed.

Why are you making these changes?

In order to do our part in helping to limit the spread of COVID-19, we need to ensure that we practice social distancing where possible for our team and our customers, while also maintaining safe and reliable operations. These are precautionary changes to ensure we have sufficient resources to safely and reliably deliver the natural gas services that our customers rely on.

What changes are you making to your energy conservation programs?

Enbridge Gas is temporarily suspending some in-person elements of our energy conservation programs including the energy audit portion of our Home Efficiency Rebate and Home Winterproofing Programs and the in-field delivery of some commercial measures. Information on our conservation programs and rebates can be found here: https://enbridgesmartsavings.com/ website.

Will this issue affect my natural gas service?

Enbridge Gas has robust pandemic and business continuity plans in place to ensure we can continue to provide natural gas service to homes and businesses. We are prepared and have experience managing operations through large-scale crisis, as we've done before for previous emergency conditions like H1N1. We've communicated with our suppliers and contractors, and they too have detailed business continuity plans in place to ensure the safety of their workforce.

Are you closing any of your offices/locations?

Access to our Ombudsman office at 500 Consumers Blvd, in North York and the Niagara contact centre in Thorold are temporarily closed to walk-in-traffic. Customers can still access these offices by phone. Work-at-home plans are in place for roles suited to working remotely.

How will COVID-19 impact your community expansion projects / other construction projects?

We are committed to meeting the growing demand for reliable and affordable energy in Ontario and we will continue to move essential infrastructure projects forward.

Are you offering financial assistance or deferred payment plans for affected customers?

We understand that this is a particularly difficult time for customers, who may be facing unexpected financial challenges as a result of COVID-related work interruptions or slowdowns.

That's why we won't be disconnecting residential or small business partners for non-payment until Aug. 1, 2020. We also offer enhanced payment plans for customers who have concerns about their ability to pay their utility bill and to help avoid late payment fees. Information is available here:

We're also providing support to communities by advancing funds for food banks, social service agencies, mental health organizations, first responders and healthcare providers who provide relief to people most vulnerable to COVID-19's impacts.

The Federal Government has announced relief funding which includes temporary income support for Canadians who face financial challenges related to the COVID-19 outbreak. The Ontario Energy Board (OEB) and the Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines (Ministry) is also developing the COVID-19 Energy Assistance Program or CEAP. We will advise when eligibility and delivery of the program is available in the coming weeks.

The Government has shut down construction across the Province. Why are your crews still working?

Natural gas construction has been labelled as essential service work by the provincial government and is necessary for us to continue to reliably and safely deliver the energy that residents and businesses depend on, now more than ever. Please see Ontario’s list of essential services for additional information. We understand however, that these are extraordinary times and that’s why we are following the latest guidance provided by public health officials and government authorities and have augmented our existing procedures to protect public and employee health and safety, which are our highest priority. Our enhanced safety procedures include:

  • Entrance to our construction sites is tightly controlled through site pre-screening. Any Enbridge Gas employee or contractor that is feeling ill or may have been exposed to any COVID-19 risk is required to remain at home and self-isolate.
  • On-site, we have implemented heightened disinfection practices, physical distancing, close-proximity work procedures when the work task cannot accommodate physical distancing, enhanced personal protective equipment, staggered work hours and remote work.
  • For projects where we are bringing natural gas to under served communities, we will build the main pipeline and individual customer service pipelines, which do not require direct interaction with occupants or the public, and we have postponed the installation of meters at customer homes or businesses to avoid physical interaction between company representatives and the public.

Why are you continuing to read meters?

We are following the latest guidance provided by public health officials and government authorities. Our meter readers are taking extra precautions to keep the public safe including practicing proper hygiene, maintaining physical distancing and not coming to work if they are not well or have had any risk of exposure. We have suspended reading meters located inside homes, and outside meters are only read once every other month.

Why are you changing meters at this time?

The scheduled replacement of meters and the accompanying inspection of the natural gas equipment in your home / business, is an important part of an ongoing maintenance plan that ensures your natural gas service continues to operate safely and is a requirement under Ontario safety regulations. We've implemented enhanced protocols to ensure public and employee safety including pre-screening questions for customer visits and augmented personal protective equipment requirements where necessary. No Enbridge Gas employee or contractor that is feeling ill or may have been exposed to any COVID-19 risk factors will conduct work in customer homes or businesses.

Why don’t you wear PPE every time you enter a customer home?

We are following the latest guidance provided by public health officials and government authorities. This includes pre-screening questions for customer visits and the use of personal protective equipment where necessary. In addition our representatives are taking extra precautions to keep the public safe including maintaining physical distancing, practicing proper hygiene and no Enbridge employee or contractor that is feeling ill or may have been exposed to any COVID-19 risk factors will conduct work in customer homes or businesses.

I, or someone in my home has COVID (or have been exposed to COVID-19, or are in a high-risk category), and I do not wish to have my meter exchanged right now. Can this be postponed?

Meter changes will only occur through booked appointments. If you are unable to have your meter change completed in the required timeframe, we can temporarily defer the work.