I just remembered this from almost a decade ago. Happened in the autumn in UK so not very cold. It was around 11:15am on a Saturday.
Boiler repair call centre
M = me
CG = Customer’s Grandchild
I’m covering as manager and get passed an escalation.
M: “Hi, I’m the manager that you requested to speak to, how can I help.”
CG: “Hi, I’m speaking on behalf of my Grandpa, he’s got no heat or hot water. He’s in his 90’s and needs it fixed asap.”
M: “Of course, that’s definitely a priority. I can see that we’ve actually already booked this as an emergency call. This means that the engineer has been assigned the job will get to your grandad as quickly as he can.”
CG: “In the next hour?”
M: “Our system doesn’t give us an exact time of arrival so we don’t like to give Eta’s. Rest assured, our engineer will be there as quickly as possible and restore your granddad’s heat and hot water.”
CG: “Not good enough.”
M: “Pardon me?”
CG: “It needs to be finished by 12. I’m leaving at 12 so the engineer needs to be done by then.”
M: “There’s no way to guarantee that, sorry. The engineer is on his way but traffic is usually worse on weekends and even if he were to get there in the next 15 minutes, we can’t promise that the issue will be resolved in 30 minutes.”
CG: “I’ve heard all this from your colleague, that’s why I requested a manager. I NEED to be gone by noon. He’s an old man, he can’t be left alone.”
M: “If I may, is there any particular reason that you need to leave at noon?”
CG: “I’m going shopping, not that it’s any of your business. That’s why I need this resolved I can’t leave him alone, he’s an old man. HE’S AT RISK!”
M: “I understand that he’s at risk and that’s why we’re getting someone to him as soon as we physically can. However, as I’ve said, there’s no way to guarantee that it will be completed before 12 noon, so as you’re concerned about leaving your grandfather on his own, may I suggest postponing the shopping until it’s resolved? “
Cue several minutes of screaming about how I personally want the elderly to die
Line ended up dropping while I spoke to the dispatch team to get an ETA for the engineer.
TL;DR: I get accused of wanting to let the elderly die because an at risk man’s granddaughter wants to go shopping