Locks on Meter boxes are now claimed to be a “defect in your electrical installation” by Powercor. The defects require your attention to ensure the safety of your installation and the exchange of your current meter for a smart meter. The defect identified is Lock on your meterbox. They then go on to say “this may require you to engage a Registered Electrical Contractor”. “When the works are completed, please fill out and return the enclosed Compliance Declaration Form”.
They are also asking tenants to “provide Property Owner details”. (we ask wouldn’t this be a problem under the Privacy Act that we regular citizens have to abide by? Or is this Powercor’s way of getting around it?)
They say if you have any questions to phone them – WE STRONGLY SUGGEST YOU DON’T PHONE THEM, KEEP EVERYTHING IN WRITING.
They have also attached an information flyer and the first paragraph states: “What are your responsibilities in regard to customer installation defect rectification?” The flyer then states, “Under the Electricity Distribution Code, customers are responsible to ensure that the wiring and electrical installation at your premises are maintained in safe conditions. Unsafe conditions could lead to a risk of electrical shocks, overheating of wiring, fire starts or other safety issues”.
WE FIND THIS UNBELIEVABLE THAT THEY COULD PUT IN WRITING THAT A LOCK COULD DO ANY OF THESE THINGS AND THAT THEY CONSIDER THE INSTALLATION OF A SMARTMETER TO BE THE “SAFE” OPTION FOR US. If this is how they define a defect, then SMARTMETERS SHOULD BE BANNED BECAUSE THERE HAVE BEEN EVENTS INDICATING THAT SMARTMETERS CAN CAUSE electrical shocks, overheating of wiring, fire starts or other safety issues.
Perhaps we could send a letter back stating that our lock has been checked and it is working fine, and definitely not posing any “risk of electrical shocks, overheating of wiring, fire starts or other safety issues” and that we are not aware of any “wiring and electrical installation” at our premises that hasn’t been maintained in safe conditions.
All those getting these ridiculous letters, get your pens out again, write your response, (remember to keep a copy and if possible send it registered post keeping the receipt of the reg post with your copy) decide whether you want to keep your meterbox locked, and keep your “no consent” sign (downloadable here) and make sure you have the very important no trespass sign (download here) at the entry to your property.
We cannot emphasise the importance of the “no trespass” sign enough. Put the signs up everyone, they are making a difference and it shows others who are making a stand what to do as well. We have just created a new sign on the http://www.vistaprint.com.au site – its called a “lawn sign”, measures 455 mm x 305mm, is weatherproof and is clearly seen from the road. We have attached a picture and asked stopsmartmeters to put it on the site for others to download here. If you wish to use it you could print on an A4 and laminate if you like, but this looks big, bold and clear.
Good luck everyone and stay with the fight to take the Power back over forced installations many of us believe are against our democratic and human rights.