Tuesday, August 4, 2015

‘Smart’ meters model not used

TORONTO—None of Ontario’s utilities use the same model of so-called “smart” meters that has been linked to fires in Saskatchewan, the province’s electricity regulator said yesterday.
Thirty-six of 77 utilities in Ontario use smart meters from U.S.-based Sensus Inc., but none are the Generation 3.3 model used in Saskatchewan, said Ontario Energy Board spokeswoman Karen Cormier.

“The utilities have not reported any safety concerns,” she said in an e-mail.
Smart meters have been linked to 23 incidents reported to Ontario’s Fire Marshal from 2011-13, which included 13 small fires.
SaskPower plans to remove all 105,000 of its Sensus smart meters and replace them with traditional units.
Utilities in Philadelphia and Oregon also reportedly have decided to remove the Sensus meters after a number of devices overheated and some caught fire.
Sensus has defended its products, saying its inspections and tests into the recent incidents point to external factors, such as holes in the meter boxes that allowed water in, or power surges.
The company said all its meters go through rigorous testing, and meet or exceed industry safety standards.
The province’s energy minister declined to comment yesterday.

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