Fire – August 21, 2012 - Vancouver
Fire – July 31 – Port Alberni
A Corix technician inspects a damaged electrical meter base on Margaret Street on Tuesday afternoon after an attempted smart meter swap-out went wrong. - Alberni Valley News
Fire – June 15 – Mission BC
Fire – Alberni – May 2012
By Wawmeesh G. Hamilton – Alberni Valley News
Published: May 16, 2012
Human error, not electrical malfunction sparked an electrical fire during a smart meter swap-out at a Port Alberni residence, Port Alberni Fire Chief Tim Pley said.
Fire crews responded to a call about an ‘electrical problem’ at a house in the 3200 block of Ninth Avenue just after 4 p.m. on Tuesday.
Upon arrival, firemen saw smoke coming out of the basement door adjacent to the electrical meter base. “They heard sounds of fire crackling inside the door,” Pley said.
Firemen forced their way in the basement of the house where they found a small fire burning near the electrical panel, which because it’s electric they doused with chemical extinguishers instead of water, Pley said.
Flames were making their way up the inside of the wall so firemen forced their way into the main floor of the house and stopped the fire before it went any further, Pley said.
Firemen found signs of melted electrical wire and charred wood around the electrical meter area, but human error caused the flare-up, he said.
“One of the meter technicians caused a short in the meter base when he used a tool inside it,” Pley said. “The smart meter never even got installed yet — there’s no evidence I’ve seen that they cause fires.”
Pley said he’s heard of other fires involving smart meter swap-outs. “In those cases the meter bases were old and brittle but that’s not the cause here,” Pley said.
Hydro has been cut from the home, which has now been turned back over to the owner.
“He’s going to have to get an electrician to repair the wiring and get it inspected before power can be restored,” Pley said. “He’s insured but it’s going to be a pretty big job.”
Corix Utilities has been contracted by BC Hydro to install 1.8 million smart meters throughout B.C. — 17,800 meters in Port Alberni. Corix employees and a vehicle were present at the incident on Ninth Avenue.
Corix officials couldn’t be reached for comment.
BC Hydro spokesperson Ted Olynyk confirmed that there was a problem during an installation of a smart meter in Port Alberni. “The work was done by a qualified electrician with over 15 years of experience,” Olynyk said.
Further comment about the matter will be made after Olynyk speaks with Corix officials, he said.
Hydro and Corix have put the homeowner up in a hotel. “We want to make right by the customer just as quick as we can,” Olynyk said.
Property Damage – BC – May 2012
About a month ago I had an issue with my stove. it’s electric. I had a pot on the back burner when all of a sudden it sounded like a welder. I freaked out and got the pot off the stove and turned the burner off and at this time the lights of the stove/clock/etc. turned off. Everything came on a minute or so later. My husband thought it was because I had aluminum foil wrapped around the catch basins for the elements. I removed this and had no more problems until last night the same thing happened, after I hurriedly moved the pot off of the back right of the stove the pot top came off and welded itself to the front pot on the stove. All the lights on the stove went off and then came on by themselves again. When my husband went to remove the front pot it was welded to the element. The left burner in the back was still on and when I shut it off everything on the stove shut down.
I’m going to get my husband to check out the stove but was wondering if anyone else has had this problem since having the smart meter installed?
Fire – May 15 – Alberni smart meter swap-out sparks fire
Firemen emerge from the basement of a Ninth Avenue house on Tuesday afternoon after extinguishing an electrical fire. The flare up was sparked during work on a smart meter swap-out, fire officials say.
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