Upstate grandmother hit with $62K power bill

SPARTANBURG COUNTY, SC (WSPA) — Imagine getting a power bill for more than $62,000 for just one month.

That’s what happened to Sybil Brown in Spartanburg County, but the facts were on her side.

“I thought it was crazy,” said the 80-year-old great-grandmother.

If she didn’t have proof, you might not believe her Duke power bill was real, but then again, an honest woman like Sybil Brown wouldn’t lie.

“Well I pay my bill when they are due,” says Brown.

Printed in black and white on her bill, amount due: $62,082.63 for one month. The bill was not for her house, but her barn garage where nothing is on but the refrigerator.

If the bill had been accurate, the total kilowatts would be more than 996,000 a month. That’s roughly 30,000 a day. A daily cost of more than $1,774.

“I knew it was a mistake,” Brown says.

While it was easy for Brown to spot this mistake, it might not always be that way for everyone.

“This one was a process error,” admits Ryan Mosier with Duke Energy. “This was a big mistake that we caught thanks to the customer getting in touch with us. But bottom line is, we need the customers to let us know when they think there’s something going wrong with their bill.”

Brown’s daughter called to help her fix the mistake, and the new bill turned out to be just $40.