September 28, 2018 10:20 a.m.
Pacific Power is bringing smart meters to residents and businesses in Douglas County.
Pacific Power’s Regional Business Manager Scott Carter said the new technology will replace thousands of aging meters starting this fall.
Carter said about 40,000 new meters will be installed throughout Douglas County. Work will begin November 5th and continue through January. The utility will replace 590,000 meters in communities around the state from now through the fall of 2019.
Carter said the new smart meters will:
*Instantly track outages, meaning faster response and shorter outages overall.
*Let customers view their power usage hour-by-hour so they can adjust their activity to reduce both their carbon footprint and bill.
*Provide businesses with detailed usage reporting which will help them cut costs.
*Upgrade the grid to work more efficiently and better integrate renewable power sources.
Nationwide more than 70 million smart meters are installed at homes and businesses, which includes half of the households in the United States. Carter said that smart meters are a key component to updating the energy grid built for technology 100 years ago.
During the installation process:
*Customers will be notified before installation and will receive detailed information about the new smart meters.
*Pacific Power’s authorized installer, Aclara, will arrive between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. to make installations. Installers will drive vehicles and carry badges that identify them as an authorized contractor for Pacific Power. Unless an electric meter is inside, they will not need to enter a customer’s home or business.
*During the installation, technicians will remove the old meter, install the new one, restore service and verify that the meter is working. The process will require a brief outage, usually of less than five minutes.
*Pacific Power will manually read the newly installed meters for at least a month to confirm that everything is working properly.
More information is available at www.pacificpower.net/smartmeter.