Northeast Times

PECO to resume smart meters

Start­Frag­ment

PECO will re­sume in­stalling its new “smart meters” with­in the next 45 days, the util­ity an­nounced last week.

Smart meter in­stall­a­tion was sus­pen­ded last month after some of the devices over­heated and caused fires. More than 200,000 of the meters had been in­stalled be­fore the com­pany got 26 re­ports of prob­lems, PECO spokes­wo­man Cathy En­gel Men­en­dez said in Septem­ber. Five of the in­cid­ents were in North­east Phil­adelphia, she said.

The com­pany had used a mix of meters man­u­fac­tured by Sensus  and Land­is+Gyr (L+G), but now that its own and in­de­pend­ent tests have con­cluded, En­gel Men­en­dez said last wek, PECO will use L+G ex­clus­ively.

The Sensus meters — 96,000 of them — will be re­placed with L+G meters, she said. Cus­tom­ers will re­ceive two let­ters and a tele­phone call be­gin­ning about six weeks be­fore they re­ceive a new meter.

Cus­tom­ers with any ques­tions or con­cerns can call 1-855-741-9011.

State law re­quires used of the new meters, which send and re­ceive in­form­a­tion from PECO. They are de­signed to help the util­ity more quickly re­store power dur­ing black­outs and also provide PECO and its cus­tom­ers with more de­tailed power-us­age in­form­a­tion.

Smart meters were in­stalled in the North­east throughout the spring and sum­mer.

Some res­id­ents said they thought the meters emit dan­ger­ous ra­di­ation. Oth­ers have pri­vacy wor­ries, and still oth­ers simply don’t like that they must al­low their old meters to be ex­changed for the new smart meters. The util­ity has countered that new meters are safe and can’t spy on cus­tom­ers. They are, however, re­quired by law and the util­ity could cut power to cus­tom­ers who don’t per­mit in­stall­a­tion of the new meters. ••End­Frag­ment 

You can reach at jloftus@bsmphilly.com.

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