Starting in February, all Upper Southampton homes and businesses will have new automatic read water meters installed by the National Metering Company.
The new Automatic Meter Reading technology allows an accurate and timely reading without an employee having to physically step foot on a property, according to an informational pamphlet that was distributed to all residents and business owners mid-January.
The explained the need and purpose for the technology at the last Board of Supervisors meeting:
- The meters can transmit a reading to a Water and Sewer Authority Vehicle as it passes by.
- It will only take a few hours to read all of the meters, compared to several days with the old system.
- The authority, therefore, will have no need to enter a property unless an issue arises or a visit is requested from the home or business owner.
- The new meters will record information more accurately.
National Metering Service employees will contact home and business owners to set up appointments to install the new meters—a process that will take between 15 to 30 minutes.
As of now, the specific start date for the installations and the first neighborhood to be affected has yet to be determined, according to Herb Schoell of the Municipal Authority.
"I don't know exactly what neighborhood will be first," he said, "but a meeting [set] for mid-week next week should clear things up."
An employee will replace the old meter and install a radio transmitter. Every month, an authority vehicle equipped with a radio receiver will drive throughout Upper Southampton and collect water meter readings remotely. Then at the end of the day, the information will be downloaded into the authority's billing system, as described in the mailer.
The radio transmitter's run on lithium batteries that have a life expectancy of 20 years, and is not connected to any utilities in your home or business.
For your protection, Metering Service employees will all have photo IDs and be driving marked vehicles. Additionally, all employees have undergone state police background tests and drug testing.