PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — National Grid is warning customers in New England of a utility bill payment scam.

The utility said Tuesday that electric customers across the U.S. have reported receiving phone calls from those claiming to work for National Grid. The callers are demanding payment on past due balances and threatening that customers’ power will be shut off if they don’t pay.

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In some cases, the scammers tell customers they have a faulty meter that is dangerous and needs to be replaced. Customers are told to make an immediate payment over the phone to keep their service from being shut off.

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National Grid says it never seeks payment of any type over the telephone and urges customers who have received such calls to contact customer service to report it.

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Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.