Between the Monday storms that caused a few dozen power outages, and storms two weeks ago that left some 20,000 homeowners in the dark for days, LP&L says Automatic Meter Readers, or AMRs, are a necessity here in Lubbock.
During their Monday night meeting, LP&L told the electric utility board that if Lubbock had AMRs during the storms back on June 5, crews would have had all the outages fixed 24 hours faster than they did.
Gail Kring is the Chairman of the Board. He says right now, LP&L simply has no way of knowing there is an outage unless someone calls and tells them. But Kring says AMRs can alert crews without a single phone call.
"We did over 40,000 disconnects and reconnects this last year. We had to send people out to do that, and that costs money. People that had their electricity cut off, then they were recharged extra fees for that. This way we can just push a button it takes electricity off. We can do the same way of putting it back on without sending personnel out to do the job," Kring said.
The board unanimously voted "yes" Monday to begin the process of taking bids for AMRs.
Kring says although the project is expected to cost $20 million, LP&L expects a four-year payback.
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