Starting last week, the Russellville Electric Plant Board began switching out its old meters and replacing them with brand new state-of-the art meters
This should be a big improvement for both customers and the electric provider, said EPB director Robert White.
Some of the meters currently at residents in the city are 30 to 40 years old and needed to be replaced anyway. The new meters will take readings every half hour and report those back to the EPB office.
In time, White says, customers will be able to view their half hourly readings online to see when they are using the most electricity.
“That will allow them to figure out what they need to do in order to cut down their usage and save money,” White said.
The new meters will take readings for electricity only.
“These will not gather any personal information,” White said. “That’s a misconception that is out there sometimes about these new meters. But they will only measure how much electricity your home is using and the Electric Plant Board will not sell or give that information out to any marketing groups.”
The complete installation of the new meters is expected to take about four months.
And EPB customers should be aware that during this time, they may see an EPB employee on their property switching out the meters.
“We want our customers to know that when our technicians come out to your property, they will identify themselves and they will have at least a shirt, jacket or hat that identifies them as an Electric Plant Board employee,” White said.
In most cases, switching out the meters is a simple job. But at some homes and businesses, it may be necessary for extra electrical work to be done in order to hook up the new meter.
“When that happens, we will hire and send out a certified electrician,” White said. “This will not be an EPB employee, but we will make sure and notify our customers when this is going to occur.”
The cost of the extra electrical work will be absorbed by the Electric Plant Board.
“We thought that was the right thing to do by our customers,” White said.