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Rocky Mountain Power to install automated meters

Rocky Mountain Power is improving service for its customers in central, southern and eastern Utah with new automated electric meters.

Approximately 34,000 state-of-the-art meters will be installed on homes and businesses in the areas of Price, Richfield, Milford, Delta, Cedar City, Moab, Vernal, and many surrounding communities - beginning August 22 in the Richfield and Vernal areas. The meter installations are expected to be completed by December.

The automated meters are equipped with a radio transmitter that will allow the meter to be read from a distance. Employees will no longer need to access customers' property to read their meters in most cases. The need for estimated billing also will be eliminated, ensuring consistently accurate meter reads.

As company vehicles drive through an area, the meter number and usage data will be transmitted to a receiver in the vehicles and uploaded to Rocky Mountain Power's billing system. For security, this information is encoded so it can only be read by the utility's equipment.

Automated meters have already been installed in Wasatch Front and northern Utah communities served by Rocky Mountain Power during the past several years, beginning in 2006. By the end of this year, Rocky Mountain Power will have installed more than 948,000 automated meters throughout its service areas in Utah, Wyoming and Idaho.

Utility Partners of America is performing the meter installations for Rocky Mountain Power and will be identified via employee badges and trucks stating "Utility Partners of America, a contractor for Rocky Mountain Power." In most cases, installers will be in an area for about two weeks.

Letters have been or will be mailed to customers to provide advance notice of their meter exchange and information about their new automated meter. Installers will also knock on customers' doors prior to exchanging their meter. It generally takes only a few minutes to replace the existing meter with a new automated meter. There will be a brief power interruption during the meter installation.

The new meters have digital displays instead of dials, making it easier for customers to know how much electricity they are using. They will not interfere with any electronic or medical devices and will not transmit any personal information.

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