PG&E hasn’t yet discovered a way to prevent Mother Nature from blasting its electrical system every winter with wind, rain and snow, disrupting tens of thousands of customers across its vast 70,000 square mile service area. But thanks to a little known feature of its new SmartMeters, P G&E spokesperson, Brittany McKannay says the utility now has a way to restore power to customers more quickly. She says the SmartMeters send out a notice just as power is going out.
“In the old days, utilities across the country had few ways to learn about power outages until customers called us up to let us know, so for instance, if the power goes out in your home in the middle of the night and you’re asleep and you don’t notice it until the next morning, we normally wouldn’t know until the next morning and then send a crew out.”
McKannay says in this case the SmartMeter indicates that there is a power outage in your area and they can have troubleshooters out working to restore power even before people wake up and notice the power is out. A majority of PG and E customers have SmartMeters installed.