1) Langford Fire started by Smart Meter – Maybe or Maybe Not
Quite interesting that this article appeared in the Victoria Times Colonist today, denying that the $meter is responsible for the fire, but saying so in a way which doesn’t not deny it contributed. My letter to the editor is below. I hope you will write one, too. This is an opportunity for us to get the word out – and if there are enough letters, perhaps one or two will be published.
2) Now we have the Smart Grid Collectors causing fires
Some members have reported fires on poles where there are collectors. If you want to see what a collector looks like, there are photos on http://www.stopsmartmetersbc.com/metersgrid/identify-mesh-networks/
Please keep your ear open for pole fires in your area and tell me if you find any or if you know of any that have happened. It would be great if you’d keep a camera handy to take photos if you hear of any pole or $meter fire. Please send to firstname.lastname@example.org with “collectors” on the subject line.
3) Failed Installation Fees are Extortionary
More erroneous failed installation fees, this time in Bella Coola Valley. What is going on?
Must Hydro stoop to even more extortion??
Please pass the word to those who may not realize they are not alone in this. Demand proof that an installer came to your home, and just saying so isn’t enough. Unless they leave a card or a door hanger, there is no proof.
The extra $65.00 + GST is also being added on to the hydro bills of analog meter customers here in the Bella Coola valley. My bill (dated August 18th) totalled $168.89. I deducted the Legacy Meter charge and the Failed Meter Installation charge with applicable GST and paid BC Hydro $32.60. I am fed up with getting ripped off by the same crooks that managed Enron!!
There is a letter below about failed installations fees charged, and being fought.
4) The ZIGBEE wireless network is here – ready or not
Zigbee chips, making devices connectible to the internet grid (perhaps through the $$meter and grid) are becoming more common:
5) Is the BC Hydro Smart Grid really working or is it not?
One of the “benefits” Hydro claims to having $meters is that outage will be reported to Hydro a few minutes sooner than if they have to wait for calls from the public. Of course we know currently Hydro has a team monitoring Facebook to find out about outage, but that could be because so much of the grid is not functioning yet. But maybe this is yet another “lie” told by ITRON to sell the meters. From Florida where the grid is more established than here in BC:
I live in Florida. They have G.E. Smart Meters where I live. FPL told everyone the same lie … when there’s a power failure, they’d be instantly notified by the Smart Meters. We had a power failure. I waited 30 seconds. My generator came on. I waited another few minutes to see if the power would come back on. Nope. So dug out a phone bill and called the outage number after more than five minutes with no power. I was told I was the only one without power. I told the woman my neighbor didn’t have power either. (Smart Meter display was blank.) She kept arguing with me. I asked to speak to a supervisor. Supervisor got on and said other calls were coming in now. She noted I have an analog meter. I said that I was told the Smart Meters would automatically and instantly report the power outage. She told me no; people with Smart Meters have to call in just like me. I told her what a bunch of crock … lying to the public.
6) How much are the members of the BC Utilities being paid? REALLY?
Interesting info. from a member re salaries paid to Utility Commission members.
The BCUC is nothing more than a BCLib lab dog.
They had 23 making more than $75,000
The top 5 were paid 2012/13 Fiscal Year
B.C. Utilities Commission – 2012/13 Fiscal Year
– Kelsey, Leonard – Chair and CEO $182,636
– Nakoneshny, Philip – Director – Rates $154,975
– Thomas, Mark – Director – Infrastructure $147,946
– Chong, Doug – Director – Energy $142,613
– Thorson, Alison – Director – Policy, Planning & Customer Relations $123,457
– Morton, David – Commissioner $117,219
It also appears some if not all all receive almost the same amount of their BCUC salary from the provincial government as well – possibly the ministry of energy I am particularly concerned at what appears to be an a salary doubling quiet bonus from the government.
For example the Vancouver Sun Public Sector Salaries Lists
2012/13 Fiscal Year BCUC – Kelsey, Leonard Chair/CEO $182,636
2012/13 Fiscal Year B.C. Gov – Kelsey, Leonard Chair/CEO $179,384
The top 5 officially earn almost 3/4 of a million from the BCUC and almost the same amount from the government as part of the total official BCUC budget of $7,371,306.07 (6 million in wages and professional services) and of course who knows how much from the government to pay for the double salaries etc.
The lap dogs appear to be living in the lap of luxury
(Editor’s Note: you can search the data base at the link below. It does appear that most of these members of the BCUC are listed as working for the BCUC AND the BC. Government. You can check it out yourself. If this is true then this seems like double dipping and conflict of interest. Who are they working for; the independent BCUC or the BC Government? You cannot serve 2 masters the saying goes. But of course the BCUC is not independent.)
The article “Smart meter not to blame for fire” is telling. First, the concern and awareness that the smart meters have caused fires is growing and becoming general. Second, the wording, most likely provided by BC Hydro, is evasive.
“[The smart meter] wasn’t the direct cause of the fire” (emphasis mine) …. “combustible objects near the home could have contributed…”
The official report is that a planter caught fire due to a cigarette. The planter apparently was below the smart meter, which is primarily combustible plastic, perhaps being the “combustible object”. The heat and perhaps flame reaching the plastic meter would have caused it to melt and catch fire itself, thus spreading the fire upward. In addition to the plastic which burns, there is a lithium battery inside the meter which, when heated, can explode further contributing to the fire.
Yes, the meter itself might not have ignited the fire this time, but it sure contributed. This would not have happened with the old analog which was made of glass and metal.
From: Kim Darwin
Sent: August 28, 2014 1:28 PM
To: ‘Commission Secretary BCUC:EX’
Cc: ‘Smart Meters’; Nicholas.Simons.MLA@leg.bc.ca;
Cc: ‘Dennis and Sharon Noble’
Subject: Dispute – Failed Meter Installation Charge
Dear Ms. Hamilton:
RE: Meter No. 2711xxx
Location: xxxx xxx Road, Sechelt, BC
Account No. 1785 xxxx xxx
I wish to dispute a $65 Failed Meter Installation Charge included on my latest BC Hydro invoice dated August 20, 2014, based on the following information:
- May 5, 2014, (Schedule A) I received a form letter advising me that the Measurement Canada seal on my meter had expired.
- May 5, 2014 (Schedule B) I responded with a letter which I sent via email asking that the record on my meter be rechecked. I also asked to be provided this information before they send an installer to replace the meter
- May 10, 2014 (Schedule C) I responded with a letter which I sent via Express Post. In this letter I requested clarification and retained the right to seek legal action if they charged a failed installation fee without first complying with my requests
- I received telephone messages from the Smart Meter Department, but I chose to respond to the email
- May 27-14 (Schedule D) received email from “Todd”. The letter from Todd did not adequately address my questions/concerns set out in my May 10-14 letter.
- May 28-14 (Schedule E) I send a further responding email. I advised that if the information was provided, I would consent to a meter replacement only if an appointment was made with me.
- June 16-14 (Schedule F) I received a further email from “Jessica” advising that no official certificate was available for my meter to prove the expiration.
- June 17-14 (Schedule G) Again, I responded to “Jessica” this time asking for a permit to remove my meter to view the certification date. Again, I asked that no installer be sent to my home to replace my meter until we resolved my concerns.
- June 18-14 Agent No. IF012 arrived at my home to exchange my meter. I told him that I was in dialogue with BC Hydro and they should not have sent him. I asked if he could remove my meter and show me the certification tag. He said that if he removed it, he had been instructed that it would have to be replaced. I declined and said that I would do further investigation before consenting to the exchange as I had previously mentioned to BC Hydro several times.
- June 18-14 (Schedule H) I sent a further letter to “Jessica” advising that contrary to my multiple requests an installer had attended my home. I reiterated that seeing BC Hydro had been forewarned not to send an installer that the failed installation cost would be at their own expense. I also asked for a screen shot of the data base showing proof of the expiration of my meter and reiterating not to send any more technicians to replace my meter until I received adequate proof
- June 24-14 ((Schedule I) I sent a further email to “Jessica” asking again for proof and clarification regarding meter seal expiration of meters. Again I reiterated not to sent an installer until I have received proof.
- June 24-14 I realized that it was highly unlikely I would ever receive written proof of the requested information from BC Hydro, so I arranged for the removal of my meter so I contacted a qualified person to remove my meter so I could obtain the certification tag. Once I had the tag, I contacted Measurement Canada and was provided with the date of re-certification, place of re-certification and the expiration
- June 26-14 (Schedule J) I emailed “Jessica” and consented to replacement of my meter, but requested an appointment be made as I have a protective guard on the meter and I wished to be present to turn off my main breaker to protect my computer equipment
- June 30-14 (Schedule K) received an email from “Jessica” threatening disconnection of my service if I continued to prevent access to the meter
- June 30-14 (Schedule L) I emailed a response to “Jessica” reiterating the incompetence of BC Hydro’s communication and further advising that due to so many unwanted installations of smart meters and digital meters, my guard would remain in place. I still have not received a response to this communication.
- August 25-14 (Schedule M) I printed my August 20-14 account which shows a Failed Meter Installation Charge of $65
As you can see, I did not deny replacement of my meter, I simply requested that it be delayed until WRITTEN proof of the ACTUAL certification be provided. I have highlighted each instance where I requested that an installer NOT be sent to my home until I received the requested information. Seeing that BC Hydro did not provide that proof and sent an installer regardless, I consider that they were adequately forewarned that it would be at their own expense. Please request BC Hydro to remove the $65 Failed Meter Installation Charge from my Account.
If you require any further information, please feel free to contact me via email or telephone.
Kimberly N Darwin
(name given with permission of author)
c.c. Smeter department
c.c. Nicholas Simons, MLA MLA-Powell River-Sunshine Coast