Developing Scandal: Federal Lawsuit Confirms Problems with FP&L ‘Smart’ Meter Installations…

Developing Scandal: Federal Lawsuit Confirms Problems with FP&L ‘Smart’ Meter Installations…

burndamageFPL was in a “panic mode” over the number of meter can repairs needed and “not open to any ideas other then their own.”

Installers “took 20 seconds” to install the key device mediating electric service to FP&L customers’ homes!

As CHASM has said all along, FP&L was aware of problems with its so-called “smart” meters hurriedly and recklessly installed by the contractors it hired, “on the cheap,” to do the work. Then, when problems became evident, FP&L has denied that any problems existed! Even worse, it has continued to deny any and all liability — and to blame homeowners — for problems triggered by the “smart” meters, where no such problems existed PRIOR TO the “smart” meter installation.

The Florida Public Service Commission (FPSC) is already aware, thanks to FP&L’s vague acknowledgement of “heat damage” problems, that real problems exist with this program. (See the archived “heat damage” links, below.)

CHASM asks: Will one or more Floridians have to die in fatal house fires triggered by inherently dangerous “smart” meters, before state regulators at the FPSC take serious action?

At the very least, ratepayers MUST be given the ability to REFUSE “smart” meters without any penalty. To be clear, ratepayers already possess this right, but shamefully, it is not being respected by either the FPSC or the utilities.

READ FULL STORY AT:  https://wordpress.com/post/61836104/new/

Demonstrate and Speak Out at October 2nd CPUC Meeting

Demonstrate and Speak Out at October 2nd CPUC Meeting

-6Demonstrate Thursday, Oct. 2 8:30am- then…

Speak at CPUC Meeting 9:30am 505 Van Ness SF

Rumor has it that the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) is preparing to make a decision in the smart meter opt out proceeding case, after delaying for more than a year.

Stop Smart Meters! is calling for people to demonstrate outside and speak inside at the CPUC’s October 2nd regular business meeting to demand an end to the delay, and an end to the sleaze and corruption that line its halls.

Remember the public participation hearings in December of 2012 where more than 500 Californians spoke out against smart meters and the “opt out” fees that the utilities are using to prop up a hazardous and failing smart grid?

Now nearly two years later, and the CPUC has failed to rule on the issue and remained silent about the serious risks brought to its attention by the public, whistleblowers, and local politicians.  Perhaps they are hoping that if they drag this out long enough, people (and their complaints) will just go away.  Just the reverse is more likely.  If you ignore a festering wound, it just gets worse.

The CPUC that has been roundly criticized by the media, the public, and even its own staff over inappropriate and illegal collusion between Commissioners and PG&E as part of the San Bruno case.  This echoes our own experience of collusion between PG&E and the CPUC during the “Ralph” spy case in 2010, where it appeared that CPUC staff, paid by taxpayers, were actually working for PG&E rather than the public.

Meanwhile, neighboring Nevada has launched an inquiry into dozens of fire and electrical incidents from smart meters after a 61 year old woman and her animals were killed and a man’s face was burned in Reno earlier this year.

The house of cards is falling, all it needs is a little nudge from you, California:

DEMONSTRATION Thursday, October 2nd 8:30am  505 Van Ness Ave. in San Francisco at the corner of McAllister under the Great Seal of the State of CaliforniaMeeting starts at 9:30am.  Sign in at the table in the foyer, but even if you don’t, you are entitled to speak for at least one minute if you arrive before the end of public comment.  Yes we know it is a toxic atmosphere there (in more ways than one) but especially if you have never spoken out at a meeting, it is important to get the facts on the record.

Here is some of what we plan to say:

1) Demand that Michael Peevey and Michael Florio immediately resign, as they have shown repeatedly that they are not capable of making decisions in the public interest.

2) Demand an end to extortionate “opt out” fees and a full refund to any customer who has paid them with the incorrect assumption that these are legal fees.

3) Not interfere with community opt out decisions made by elected local governments

4) Immediately launch an independent investigation into the widely documented health and fire hazards of smart meters. (Nevada PUC has ordered a preliminary fire investigation this week)

5) Order So Cal Gas and SCE to cease double charging many Southern Californian customers opt out fees

6) Call on the state legislature to dissolve the CPUC and put an end to the “corruptness and sleazy environment (led by) an untouchable mob boss” (this according to CPUC’s own staff)

If you can’t attend the meeting (or even if you can) write an e-mail that includes the above numbered points and send to CPUC Commissioners:

CPUC Commissioners (cut and paste into the “to” field of your e-mail):

cjs@cpuc.ca.gov, mp1@cpuc.ca.gov, mp6@cpuc.ca.gov, mf1@cpuc.ca.gov, cap@cpuc.ca.gov

Please Cc Sandoval’s aide and key legislators from the Assembly Budget Subcommittee that grilled the PUC last year. (cut and paste into your e-mail’s Cc field)

dmk@cpuc.ca.gov, sean.macneil@asm.ca.gov, steve.harmon@asm.ca.gov, lucas.frerichs@asm.ca.gov, vance.jarrard@asm.ca.gov, assemblymember.patterson@assembly.ca.gov, gabrielle.meindl@asm.ca.gov, michael.bedard@asm.ca.gov, jchris.holtz@asm.ca.gov

Thank you for taking action to remove Michael Peevey and to return sanity and safety to the policy debate around smart meters.  See you on the 2nd!

posted on: http://stopsmartmeters.org/

Ralph Nader Radio Hour-Are Smart meters Installed by Companies an Invasion of Privacy?

Internationally-acclaimed biochemist calls for action against Smart Meters, WiFi in schools & baby monitors – See more at: http://stopsmartmeters.org.uk/internationally-acclaimed-biochemist-calls-for-action-against-smart-meters-wifi-in-schools-baby-monitors

HomeHealth EffectsInternationally-acclaimed biochemist calls for action against Smart Meters, WiFi in schools & baby monitors

Prof. Martin Pall is the Professor Emeritus of Biochemistry and Basic Medical Sciences at Washington State University.  He has been studying environmental medicine and chronic illnesses for nearly 15 years and has received eight international honours for his work.

In this short presentation, Prof. Pall lays to rest the misconception that non-ionising radiation needs to cause heating to cause biological damage – by explaining that pathological mechanisms for wireless harm begin with Voltage-Gated Calcium Channel (VGCC) activation at non-thermal levels.  He concludes by calling for Wi-Fi in schools, Smart Meters and wireless baby monitors to be “abolished”.

As Prof. Pall discusses, electromagnetic radiation from wireless technologies is especially harmful when pulsed – as is the case with Smart Meters which can emit up to 190,000 pulses of RF-radiation per day from each meter.  The UK’s heavily out-dated public RF exposure thresholds, however, make no allowance for the effects of these extremely bio-active emissions, meaning that if you use wireless devices, your health is at risk from the effects which Prof. Pall describes.

In this second clip, Prof. Pall and health advocate Merry Callahan offer testimony on the health impacts from EMF radiation to the Portland Public School Board.

Fatal fire in Nevada, smart meter suspected: “Be very aware, very vigilant” says Fire Chief

Fatal fire in Nevada, smart meter suspected: “Be very aware, very vigilant” says Fire Chief

by K.T. Weaver, for Take Back Your Power
Criminal liability actions against utilities deploying meters now appear to be inevitable

After recently reporting on smart meter-related fires in Canada, Pennsylvania, Oregon, and Florida, the latest reports are coming out of Nevada.

As reported by the Reno-Gazette-Journal on September 13th:

“The Reno and Sparks fire chiefs are asking the Public Utilities Commission to investigate the safety of smart meters installed by NV Energy on homes throughout the state in the wake of a troubling spate of blazes they believe are associated with the meters, including one recent fire that killed a 61-year-old woman.”

The utility company (NV Energy) maintains that the death of the woman in late July is not related to a smart meter, yet a forensic expert hired by the City of Reno wrote that the smart meter cannot be ruled out as the source of blaze and states that:

“Data tends to suggest the meter may have failed.”

RENO, NV: A woman has died as a result of fire involving a smart meter as probable cause.
Although the definitive cause of the Reno, Nevada fire-related death remains in dispute, the Fire Chiefs from both Reno and Sparks, Nevada said they have become increasingly concerned by the number of blazes that appear related to the smart meters.

Of the nine fires in Reno and Sparks that appear to be linked to the smart meters, seven resulted in minor property damage.  But one of the fires in Reno burned a man’s face.  The meter burst into flames when he flipped a breaker switch, scorching him.  He put out the flames with a fire extinguisher and was treated at a local hospital.

The forensic investigator that examined the Rhinestone Circle smart meter (where a fire resulted in a death) also examined three more smart meters associated with fires in Reno and Sparks.  He found evidence that each of the three meters—one from Reno on Arletta Drive and two from Sparks—failed.  “It is probable the Arletta meter did fail, resulting in the ignition of the fire,” wrote the investigator.

Fire officials say that smart meter fires are particularly concerning because they start on the outside of the house, won’t be picked up by indoor smoke detectors, and can escape immediate notice.  “The occupants inside may not even be aware the house is on fire.  This is very alarming to me,” said Sparks Fire Chief Tom Garrison.

NV Energy utility representatives generally won’t even use the term “fire.”  They state that the company has responded to 70 “consumed meters,” describing a consumed smart meter as one that has had its plastic casing “melted or breached and there can be soot.”

Fire Chief Garrison said it’s difficult to tell homeowners how to react at this point:

Fire Chief Garrison - smart meter fires“I would say be very aware, very vigilant about any type of potential electrical problem they might see in their home,” he said.  “If you noticed any burned electrical panel, any smoke, even if it’s small, wispy smoke, if the meter is extremely hot, or you hear a noise or see any arcing, call 911 and the fire department will come out and ensure the meter is properly checked.”

We have a suggested simple and safe solution to the problem.  Get rid of all so-named smart meters.  Let’s do it for the sake of life, and property – as well as peace of mind.

Update from the Nevada State Fire Marshal:  “Smart Meters Warrant Investigation”

In an updated article from the Reno-Gazette-Journal on September 16th: 

“Almost two years after he issued a report finding ‘no systemic fire problem’ associated with NV Energy’s installation of smart meters on homes across the state, Nevada Fire Marshal Peter Mulvihill said new information has come to light that warrants further investigation into whether the meters are safe.

Mulvihill acknowledged that the data he relied on to determine that NV Energy’s smart meters did not pose a fire threat was incomplete, but said his findings were valid at the time.

This year, Mulvihill said his office has received two reports each from Reno and Sparks in which investigators ‘conclusively found the meter to be the origin.’”

—————————————

Source Material for this Article:

“Reno, Sparks Fire Chiefs Call for Smart Meter Probe,” at:
http://www.rgj.com/story/news/2014/09/13/reno-sparks-fire-chiefs-call-smart-meter-probe/15580069/

“Rhinestone Circle Fire Victim Dies in Hospital,” at:
http://www.mynews4.com/news/local/story/Rhinestone-Circle-fire-victim-dies-in-hospital/dHlyzshLm0Wr-sjs_OxsQQ.cspx

“Nevada Fire Marshal: Smart Meters Warrant Investigation,” at
http://www.rgj.com/story/news/2014/09/15/state-fire-marshal-smart-meters-warrant-investigation/15698635/

READ FULL ARTICLE AT: http://www.takebackyourpower.net/news/2014/09/16/smart-meter-fires-spread-to-nevada-be-aware-vigilant-says-fire-chief/

Take Back Your Power bolt - 100

About the Author

K. T. Weaver is a health physicist who was employed in the nuclear division of a leading electric utility for over 25 years.  He served in various positions, including Station Health Physicist, Senior Health Physicist, corporate Health Physics Supervisor, and corporate Senior Technical Expert for Radiobiological Effects.  K.T. has earned a B.S. in Engineering Physics and an M.S. in Nuclear Engineering with a specialty in radiation protection.  He also operates the “SkyVision Solutions” website at www.skyvisionsolutions.org.

Legal and Public Health Problems of the Wireless Age

Monday, September 08, 2014

EXCERPT FROM ARTICLE: In addition to Wi-Fi and cell phones, the roll out of wireless utility “smart” meters on homes has brought high-powered transmitter infrastructure in closer to areas people inhabit, creating even greater radiation exposures.  (See my article, “Rise of the Machines”, which compares Wi-Fi and smart meter exposure, and Karl Maret’s, MD, Eng. presentation at the San Francisco Commonwealth Club, which compares smart meter and cell tower emissions.)  In May, HUD forced a conciliation agreement with a municipality to remove wireless water meter infrastructure that was making a resident sick.  (Saskatchewan, Canada has been more aggressive — announcing the removal of all 105,000 wireless utility meters from their province a few weeks ago.)

READ FULL ARTICLE AT: http://pubcit.typepad.com/clpblog/2014/09/legal-and-public-health-problems-of-the-wireless-age.html

We Need More “Smarts” for the EMC Society Activity in Smart Grid

EMC Standards Activity:
We Need More “Smarts” for the
EMC Society Activity in Smart Grid

EMC Standards Activity:
We Need More “Smarts” for the
EMC Society Activity in Smart Grid

There is much interest in the Smart Grid (SG) in the US and internationally. SG will deliver electricity from suppliers to consumers by use of two-way digital technology to control appliances at consumers’ homes to save energy, reduce cost, and increase reliability and transparency. It overlays the electricity distribution grid with an information network and bidirectional metering system (see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smart_grid). The need for standards and in particular EMC standards is very evident and hence it will be the focus of this column. Major standards players internationally include the International Electrotechnical Commission (see http://www.iec.ch/zone/smartgrid/) and the IEEE (see http://smartgrid.ieee.org/). In the US, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is facilitating the national approach (see http://www.nist.gov/smartgrid/). Members of the EMC Society Standards Development Committee (SDCom) are working in both the national and international arenas to make sure that EMC is a major consideration in making the SG work.
Last May, “ConnectivityWeek 2010” was held in Santa Clara. It was a collection of events that together focused on the application of Information Technology (IT) to the energy challenges presented by climate change and the need for sustainability. The thrust was to see how IT can be leveraged towards this new energy paradigm. So where was EMC discussed? Well, as it turns out, Galen Koepke of NIST in Boulder, Colorado chaired a session on EMC for the SG. The EMC Standards Associate Editor asked Galen to share his report with our EMC Newsletter readers. Here is his report, with some additional augmentation by the Associate Editor.

Highlights of Connectivity Week 2010:
EMC and Smart Grid

At ConnectivityWeek, an initial meeting of interested parties was held to discuss electromagnetic compatibility for smart grid systems. The session was part of the Smart Grid Interoperability Panel (SGIP) workshops on SG standards. This session featured four EMC experts with experience in the electrical power grid and related systems. These experts presented various perspectives on interference and compatibility concerns both in the existing grid and the proposed Smart Grid.
The session began with Dr. Robert Olsen (Washington State University) explaining the “traditional” power grid environment (high 50/60 Hz fields, corona and spark discharge, harmonic fields, power system communications). These environments can cause human health and safety issues, and interference to shared right-of-way railroads, pipelines, and communications systems. In particular, power line communications can interfere with radio navigation (LORAN-C) and open-wire telephone systems. The corona causes radio noise that may interfere with broadcast services, radio navigation, and communications systems, in addition to audible noise and possible damage to insulators. The SG will increase exposure to these effects by the introduction of “Flexible AC Transmission”, increased use of broadband over power line communications, smart metering systems, and other communications systems. The power grid environment also presents challenges to optical fiber lines due to lightning and dry band arcing damage, and can cause electronic measurement instruments to malfunction.

Andy Drozd (ANDRO Computational Solutions) expanded on the SG system of systems concept and how it is a “confluence of power and energy, communications, IT, EMC, reliability, and cyber security technologies”. He indicated that there should not be isolated or stovepiped specialties in the traditional sense, as EMC, spectrum sensing, security, reliability, etc. are all intertwined. Recognizing these relationships would allow a cross dialog with other groups and underscore the importance of the “EMC/EM effects” as part of the SG life cycle. The characteristics of the SG include self-healing (fault tolerant), resilience against physical and cyber attacks, enabling of new applications, efficient operation with high-quality power, active participation by consumers, and, most importantly, accommodating the connection of all generation and storage options. Andy then described the NIST SG interoperability standards program and the IEEE P2030 (Guide for Smart Grid Interoperability of Energy Technology and Information Technology Operation with the Electric Power System (EPS), and End-Use Applications and Loads) development and why EMC must be addressed in order for the new SG to achieve its potential. Four categories of events could cause the SG to be vulnerable:

  • Common events such as ESD, fast transients, power line disturbances;
  • RF interference from various emitters/transmitters;
  • Coexistence of various wireless devices;
  • High-level EM disturbances including lightning, geomagnetic storms, intentional EMI, and high-altitude EMP.

     IEEE, IEC, and ANSI standards related to these effects were also identified.
  Note: The essence of the above EMC issues has been presented to the IEC Strategic Group 3 (SG3), which is the focus of the IEC activity in Smart Grid. This presentation was at the SG3 Technical Committee/Subcommittee officer’s workshop in early July. Another presentation was at the IEC Advisory Committee on EMC (ACEC) in June. Both presentations were by the EMC Newsletter Associate Editor for EMC Standards Activity.
Dr. William Radasky (Metatech Corporation) presented an overview of the high-power electromagnetic (HPEM) threats to the electric power system. The high-impact, low-frequency events include high-altitude electromagnetic pulse (HEMP), intentional electromagnetic interference (IEMI), and severe geomagnetic storms from solar activity. The possible consequence to the power grid infrastructure from the HEMP would be widespread cascading failure. The power, energy transport, telecommunications, and financial systems are particularly vulnerable and interdependent. This disruption would have a significant impact on all aspects of society. A somewhat more likely threat is posed by IEMI or intentional electromagnetic interference. This is defined as “Intentional malicious generation of electromagnetic energy introducing noise or signals into electric and electronic systems, thus disrupting, confusing or damaging these systems for terrorist or criminal purposes,” (IEC 61000-2-13:2005-“EMC-Part 2-13: Environment–High Power Electromagnetic (HPEM) Environments—Radiated and Conducted”). IEMI can induce effects similar to HEMP but more localized, unless a coordinated attack is performed. The protection methods for electronic systems are similar for both IEMI and E1 HEMP. In the case of IEMI, security measures to physically separate attackers from target systems and the use of EM monitors should be part of the protection plan. The discussion of a severe geomagnetic storm began with a dramatic photo of a coronal mass ejection on the surface of the sun. These events can induce high levels of quasi-dc current on the high-voltage power grid. These currents can cause transformer saturation, voltage instability leading to blackouts, and hot spot heating damage in large transformers. Without adequate protection, recovery (due to long replacement periods for large transformers) could be prolonged – months to years. These threats have been recognized for many years and efforts are being made to apply protection techniques to the existing grid. The Smart Grid will introduce more potential points of failure from these high-power EM threats, and protection must be considered early in development rather than as a retrofit. The first step is to have a robust EMC program for all electronics used to control the grid, then to consider specific high power EM threats one by one and determine the most cost effective manner for protection.

Shown above is a graphic definition of the Smart Grid generated by the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI).
For more information on EPRI activity related to the Smart Grid, visit http://www.smartgrid.epri.com.

Read full article at:  http://www.ewh.ieee.org/soc/emcs/acstrial/newsletters/summer10/EMCStandards.html

Domino Effect: More Smart Meters Being Replaced Due to Fires

Domino Effect: More Smart Meters Being Replaced Due to Fires

Lakeland Fire“A Major Consumer Alert”

It is almost impossible to keep track of all of the smart meter fires and related safety issues.  We jump from country to country and from state to state.  The latest issue is in Florida where Lakeland Electric  will soon begin replacing over 10,000 residential smart meters on concerns they might overheat, General Manager Joel Ivy said Tuesday, August 26th.

Are we seeing a domino effect within the industry? 

Six of the meters have caught fire during the past year, Ivy said.  Early Tuesday, he said the utility was still deciding whether to replace the meters, but later in the day, he said the decision had been made.

Lakeland Mayor Howard Wiggs said Tuesday he was concerned about the issue of the overheating meters.

“It’s pretty significant,” Wiggs said.

Read full article at:  http://smartgridawareness.org/2014/08/27/domino-effect-of-more-smart-meters-being-replaced-due-to-fires/

Are tens of thousands of defective “smart” meters being stealthily replaced in Arizona?

Are tens of thousands of defective “smart” meters being stealthily replaced in Arizona?

by Warren Woodward

"Smart" meter recallIn the wake of several massive “smart” meter recalls due to component overheating and subsequent fires, is Arizona Public Services Company (APS) replacing tens of thousands of “smart” meters?

An anonymous APS whistle-blower says, “Yes.”

Read more in my letter to the Arizona Corporation Commission below:

September 2, 2014

Arizona Corporation Commissioner (ACC)
Docket Control Center
1200 West Washington Street
Phoenix, Arizona 85007

Re: Docket # E-00000C-11-0328

Commissioners;

A source within APS has revealed that APS “smart” meters are failing, and failing in a way that presents a fire risk to ratepayers.

My source, whose privacy I must protect, tells me that APS has replaced thousands of faulty “smart” meters, and is scheduled to replace 50 to 60 thousand this year alone due to heat induced failure of the remote disconnect switch and LCD display. (I have seen the failed LCDs.)

Remote disconnect switch failure resulted in a recall of over 10,000 “smart” meters in Lakeland, Florida where 6 house fires occurred [Meters overheating, to be replaced in Lakeland]. And in Portland, Oregon, remote disconnect switch failure resulted in a recall of 70,000 “smart” meters after 3 fires there [PGE replacing 70,000 electricity meters because of fire risk]. “Smart” meter-caused house fires have resulted in massive “smart” meter recalls in Pennsylvania (186,000) and Saskatchewan (105,000).

You must investigate APS at once. State statute demands it:

A.R.S. 40-361.B – Every public service corporation shall furnish and maintain such service, equipment and facilities as will promote the safety, health, comfort and convenience of its patrons, employees and the public, and as will be in all respects adequate, efficient and reasonable.

A.R.S. 40-321.A – When the commission finds that the equipment, appliances, facilities or service of any public service corporation, or the methods of manufacture, distribution, transmission, storage or supply employed by it, are unjust, unreasonable, unsafe, improper, inadequate or insufficient, the commission shall determine what is just, reasonable, safe, proper, adequate or sufficient, and shall enforce its determination by order or regulation.

APS has painted a very rosy picture of their “smart” meters over the years, but have they told you about this dangerous and potentially life threatening inherent flaw, one that analog meters do not have? APS has a history of concealing information from the public and regulatory agencies. APS refuses to come clean about their “dark money” political donations, and, earlier this year, it was revealed that APS did not report an explosion at their Palo Verde nuclear plant for 5 months [‘Explosion’ at Palo Verde nuclear plant not reported for 5 months].

Also, if APS is replacing tens of thousands of “smart” meters, how long will it be until APS comes begging for a rate increase so that ratepayers bear the financial brunt of their (and your) “smart” meter fiasco?

Sincerely,

Warren Woodward