RACV CEO rides in Emergency Home Assist van

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RACV's CEO Neil Taylor attends a call with the Emergency Home Assist Team


Blocked toilets, burst pipes, broken washers and extinguished pilot lights are all part of a day’s work for RACV Emergency Home Assist plumber Chris Hynson.

Passengers are less common, so it was a first when RACV’s Managing Director and CEO Neil Taylor joined Chris on the road in the lead-up to Christmas 2016.

Neil surprised four RACV members by showing up at their emergencies to chat with them as Chris fixed their plumbing problems.

The first emergency was a burst pipe in Endeavour Hills. Chris dug up the pipe and fixed it.

Next was a broken washer in David Dinnan’s toilet cistern in Berwick.

David, who joined RACV in 1960, said it was only the second time he had called RACV. The first time was for car trouble 40 years ago. David is a gold 50 member.

“I’m very happy with the service,” he said.

Then it was on to Mount Waverley where the pilot light in Tony Perri’s hot water system had gone out.

Tony, an RACV bronze member of six years, was surprised at how easy the problem was to fix, and was looking forward to a hot shower.   

Plumber Chris said extinguished pilot lights were a common issue.

“When there’s gas involved and you’re unfamiliar with the system, people are right to stay on the cautious side,” he said.

“Hot water systems are one of the 10 common emergencies covered by Emergency Home Assist.” 

In Box Hill South, Carole McNeel’s toilet was making a gurgling sound.

Chris fixed the problem with a plunger, and got the pipes flowing smoothly.

“It’s a very worthwhile service, I’ve had two this year,” Carole said.

She said the service was speedy and she wasn’t left wondering. If further work was needed, it was good to know the problem had been identified.

Carole, an RACV member of 26 years, and husband Stephen, a member of 42 years, were married at the RACV City Club.

“It will be 40 years in February (2107), we must make sure we remember it,” she said.

Neil, who went out on the road with Emergency Roadside Assistance patrol Ron Hoogkamer in March 2016, said it was great to see first-hand how RACV helps with home emergencies. 

“These fairly common problems can quickly become challenges for members, such as not being able to use a toilet or shower,” he said.

“RACV aims to arrive within an hour and fixes almost 70 per cent of problems on the spot, and that was definitely the case today.  When you think that a call out for a tradie to just turn up can cost well over $100 and we get to people within an hour it’s great service and value”

Plumber Chris has worked with RACV for six years and said his favourite part of the job is ensuring RACV members feel satisfied with the service.

“It’s good leaving a job knowing someone isn’t without heating, hot water or stuck without a toilet.” 

In the 2015-16 financial year, RACV 35,612 home emergencies, including blocked pipes, power failures and lockouts.


Find out more about RACV Emergency Home Assistance and the top 10 most common home emergencies it covers.

For $205 per year (less with your Years of Membership Benefit discount) you get 8 call outs a year. That's cheaper than the cost of one call out with most other tradies.


Written by RACV
February 25, 2019