By Katie McKenzie
Digital and wireless utility (so-called) “Smart” Meters have been known to cause all kinds of problems everywhere they have been installed. One of them is unusually high bills. This is not at all surprising since a 2017 Dutch study confirmed that 9 of the most commonly installed “Smart” meters caused measurement errors between 30%-582%.
There have been at least 13 news stories in 6 states where Duke Energy customers have reported unusually high bills after AMI so-called “Smart” Meters were installed.
Duke Energy has only taken responsibility once when customers complained. They didn’t blame the meters though:
1. Orlando, FL 2014: “Did your Duke Energy bill go up recently? Then read this story.” http://www.orlandoweekly.com/Blogs/archives/2014/08/25/did-your-duke-energy-bill-go-up-recently-then-read-this-story
2. Tampa, FL, 2014: “One-month spike in electric bill angers Duke Energy customer” http://www.tampabay.com/news/business/energy/one-month-spike-in-electric-bill-angers-duke-energy-customer/2206226
3. South Carolina, 2016: “Duke Energy plans to install “smart meters” in all homes” http://wspa.com/2016/10/28/duke-energy-plans-to-install-smart-meters-in-all-homes/
4. Ohio and Kentucky, 2017: “Why Your Duke Bill’s So High Despite Warm Month” http://www.wcpo.com/money/consumer/dont-waste-your-money/why-your-duke-bills-so-high-despite-warm-month (Reporter John Matarese posted a link for the story on his Facebook page. There were over 500 comments posted and over 700 shares. https://www.facebook.com/JohnMatareseMoney
5. Indiana, 2017: “Early 2017 was ‘perfect storm’ for Duke Energy. President says several issues led to blizzard of complaints” http://www.tribstar.com/news/local_news/early-was-perfect-storm-for-duke-energy/article_8c4a0f85-e04b-5ebc-b81f-aaeceb0f702e.html
6. North Carolina and Indiana, 2017: “Duke Reports Errors, Weather Lead to Billing Complaints” https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/indiana/articles/2017-04-20/duke-energy-reports-errors-weather-led-to-bill-complaints
7. “Unhappy Duke Energy Customers in Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana. Are You One of Them?” http://stopsmartmeters.org/2017/05/04/unhappy-duke-energy-customers-in-ohio-kentucky-and-indiana-are-you-one-of-them/
8. “A Growing Resistance to Smart Meters in The Bluegrass State” http://stopsmartmeters.org/2017/04/27/a-growing-smart-meter-resistance-in-kentucky/
9. South Carolina, June 29, 2017: “Spartanburg Co. grandmother hit with $62K power bill” http://wspa.com/2017/06/29/spartanburg-area-grandmother-hit-with-62000-power-bill/
10. Ohio/Kentucky – September 7, 2017: “Hate Smart Meters? What It Will Cost to Opt-Out” http://www.wcpo.com/money/consumer/dont-waste-your-money/hate-smart-meters-what-it-will-cost-to-opt-out
11. Florida – September 17, 2017: “Duke Energy bills with massive increases panic Florida customers: http://wncn.com/2017/09/17/duke-energy-bills-with-massive-increases-panic-florida-customers/
12. North Carolina: February 20, 2018“Duke customer says his bills are way up after installation of smart meter” http://wlos.com/news/local/duke-customer-says-his-bills-are-way-up-after-installation-of-smart-meter
13. May 8, 2018: IN Duke Energy customers question newly installed smart meters http://cbs4indy.com/2018/05/08/duke-energy-customers-question-newly-installed-smart-meters/
There have been problems associated with these AMI meters in addition to unusually high bills. Duke is already replacing the ones they installed within the last 5-7 years with new AMI “Smart” Meters. Adding insult to injury, they have also proposed rate increases to pay for the replacements.
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