Last week we recieved a packet from San Jose Water company where the utility is clearly attemping to muddy the waters where the plan to fish. Allow us to explain:
We live in a older Los Gatos Home and San Jose Water company is our utlity service provider. In this packet San Jose Water Company was recommeding consumers purchase pipeline insurnace from a speicific insurance company. Naturally we don’t want to name them here since they don’t deserve the free plug. The information packet which has San Jose Water Comany’s logo on the envelope also contains a note from Director of Customer Service Robert Day which endorses this insurance plan.
This is a deceptive attempt to sell insurance to un-suspecting home owners and elderly which will fall victim to this marketing campaign. We are not sure at this writing how much San Jose Water company is getting from these pipeline insurance deals, but we anticipate their role is more than just a concerned utility.
Further, we believe a Utility company should not be allowed to market these kind of products. In fact we filed a notice with the California Public Utility Commission (PUC) to stop to these attempts by San Jose Water company to fleece it’s customers by selling fears of the unknown.
The problem with these kind of campaigns is that there is no opportunity for us to verify the claims made in this information packet about the pipeline’s conditions. San Jose Water company is the service provider and if they claim the condition of the pipes are bad, then the consumers don’t have any alternative to validate such claims. Compounding the problem is that fact that there is no way for us consumers to verify what portion of the pipeline safety is the responsibility of the Utility. After all, we don’t want to buy insurance for the portion of pipeline which falls under the jurisdiction of the utility.
It was not long ago that PG&E cause a massive exposition and fire that killed several people. So, pipeline safety is a huge public safety issue and can not be taken lightly. So we would like PUC to notify San Jose Water company to stop this deceptive marketing campaign to sell bogus insurance to unsuspecting home owners. If the utility is allowed to proceed with the sale of such insurance products, then the PUC should force the utility to offer consumers additional choice which is missing from their current campaign where there is only ONE insurance company endorsed.
We believe PUC has a role in mandating a different conduct from San Jose Water company and just like FDA does not allow every doctor to sell their own homebrewed medicine to their patients. PUC should also prevent San Jose Water company from muddying the water where they plan to fish.
What do you think? We would like to hear from you.