An investigation of smart meters continues after reports indicate the devices caused fires in several customers' homes.
Georgia Power and a county inspector indicated the problem was with a gray base box in the house wiring, not with the meter itself, the article stated. The company said it will work with this family to help with repair costs.
PECO , a company that uses the same meter brand as Georgia Power, recently put its installation program on hold for more than 600,000 meters after 29 reports of fires. The company plans to investigate each report, and an article by Greentech Media indicated PECO already completed about half of the investigations.
So far, the company found half of the fires investigated were due to issues with customer equipment, and the other half had issues with water leakage, meter tampering or other problems, the article reported.
Because Sensus meters were involved in all the overheating instances so far, PECO decided to replace these meters with Landis+Gyr models, and Sensus upgraded its software so its meters shut off before overheating.
Nevertheless, Sensus released a statement last month indicating no evidence points to Sensus meters as the cause of these incidents. Investigations show that issues with customer equipment likely caused the fires, Greentech reported.
Mike Innocenzo, senior vice president of operations for PECO, said the company is dedicated to the safe rollout of smart meters, according to Philly.com. He added, "We are committed to doing this well and doing it right."
Innocenzo also said the $650 million program is PECO's largest technology investment in history, and the company is willing to pay for any damages related to its smart meters.
These meters allow utilities to improve outage management, Philly.com stated, and this helps with understanding energy consumption patterns. The article also said that PECO's suspension of installations attracted unwanted attention to this technology, and regulators say concerns about the devices are "overblown."