Smart Meters To End One Of MLGW’s Most Hated Practices

Smart Meters To End One Of MLGW’s Most Hated Practices

By Mike Matthews | mmatthews@localmemphis.com

Published 05/24 2016 06:09PM

Updated 05/24 2016 06:09PM

After years of controversial and often heated arguments, employees working for Memphis Light Gas and Water have been installing smart meters at homes and apartments in the Midtown area.

Over the next few years, about one million meters will be installed, ending one of MLGW’s most hated practices.

Critics have claimed these things cause fires and that they allow utility companies to find out more personal information about your life. Some have said they cause cancer. And most of what they’ve said is baloney.

More than one million meters at a cost of $240 million are heading to areas like Midtown. Modern technology in one of the oldest neighborhoods in the city.

“This house was built in 1918,” said Midtown resident Brian Fuller.

Fuller says smart meters sound good to him.

“We’ve had the same gas lines, same everything. Having a smart meter would be something awesome.”

MLGW allows folks to say no as long as you let them know. Otherwise you’ll get a recorded message  telling you smart meter installation is on the way, normally a day in advance.

“We started the installation of our residential smart meters the week before last. As it stands right now, we’ve put in a little more than a thousand meters,” said Chris Bieber of MLGW.

Once they show up, the changeover takes no time at all. If you’re home, you will have your power shut off for about 30 seconds to a minute.

“It doesn’t take very long to pop a meter out, check the socket and put another meter in,” explained Bieber.

Smart meters will end one of the most cursed MLGW practices, having your utility bill estimated because for some reason workers were unable to read your meter.

“The only time we will estimate is if there’s a meter malfunction, but as long as the meter is working, there will be no more estimates,” said Bieber.

The whole plan should take a couple of years before everybody is metered up and ready to go.

Copyright 2016 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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