August 21, 2012
Smart Meter News
Fire Safety Concerns
Released by the Coalition to Stop Smart Meters
week Surrey Fire Chief Len Garis and Dr. Joseph Clare, strategic planning
analyst for the Surrey Fire Service, released a 7 page report substantiating
BC Hydro’s claim that smart meters do not pose a fire hazard.
This report was commissioned by BC Hydro. It was written to address a rash
of suspicious fires reported all over the province, most recently in
Nanaimo, Port Alberni, Comox, Mission, Coquitlam and Sparwood. These fires
occurred shortly after smart meters had been installed.
The authors of the report claim statistics from the Provincial Fire
Commissioner’s office support their conclusion that there is no fire hazard.
Sharon Noble, Director of the Coalition to Stop Smart Meters, questions the
accuracy of this claim.
“The Fire Commissioner’s office is not able to track smart meter caused
fires because there is no code for smart meters.” Noble received an email
from The Fire Reporting Systems Officer, Emergency Management British
Columbia, saying “there is not an applicable fire code to attach to a smart
meter related fire.”
In April, the Coalition circulated a study to every fire chief summarizing
fires reported all over the US associated with smart meters. Reports in
every jurisdiction identified 2 consistent factors contributing to these
fires, both of which exist in BC:
1) Meters are being installed by inexperienced, unqualified persons after
having received only 10 days of training. Normally only certified
electricians work on electrical meters.
2) According to a number of electrical experts, the meters themselves are
inherently dangerous. Components of Smart Meters trip Ground Fault
Interrupters and Arc Fault Interrupters, creating a fire hazard. Also,
typical home wiring (60 Hz) is not constructed or intended to carry high
frequency surges that smart meters produce to signal the usage data to
The Coalition calls for a moratorium on installations until there is an
independent investigation of the smart meters, one done by experts in
electrical engineering who have no affiliation with any agency or company
that benefit from this program.
Copyright (c) 2012 The Valley Voice