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Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....

 
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Old 06-17-2012, 08:30 AM   #21
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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The poco came out afterwards and installed the seal.

But it is not difficult to remove the seal and get it back on without it being detectable.
Doesn't make sense that they would put a new seal...if he removed the meter why would he put it back in? Now I've confused myself.
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Old 06-17-2012, 08:42 AM   #22
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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Doesn't make sense that they would put a new seal...if he removed the meter why would he put it back in? Now I've confused myself.
Not sure what state the thief left the meter (plugged in, on the ground, whatever). The POCO sleeved the meter (little plastic boots on the two load side terminals) and sealed it. This is often done when service is disconnected (especially for non-payment or suspicion of theft).

I can't tell if that's a smart meter. If it is, the thief may have known that the POCO can tell if it's in place or not and didn't want to generate an outage event associated with its disconnection.
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Old 06-17-2012, 09:24 AM   #23
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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Not sure what state the thief left the meter (plugged in, on the ground, whatever). The POCO sleeved the meter (little plastic boots on the two load side terminals) and sealed it. This is often done when service is disconnected (especially for non-payment or suspicion of theft).
Ahh gotcha, here they disconnect the service wires leaving them dangle and pull the meter head out of the box.
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Old 06-17-2012, 09:41 AM   #24
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


Shouldnt be to hard to re-wire house all the holes are done
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Old 06-17-2012, 10:18 AM   #25
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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Ahh gotcha, here they disconnect the service wires leaving them dangle and pull the meter head out of the box.
That happens here, too, when the homeowner simply pulls the meter, removes the sleeves and plugs the meter back in.

Even then, some industrious homeowners will reconnect at the weatherhead.

So the next step (for the utility) is disconnecting at the pole (or handhole, pedestal or transformer).

As a former utility operations guy, I've pretty much seen it all.

I've even heard of flexible radiator hoses used to steal natural gas when the meter has been removed. As that doesn't provide a pressure regulator, that technique often ends poorly.
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Old 06-17-2012, 10:37 AM   #26
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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That happens here, too, when the homeowner simply pulls the meter, removes the sleeves and plugs the meter back in.

Even then, some industrious homeowners will reconnect at the weatherhead.

So the next step (for the utility) is disconnecting at the pole (or handhole, pedestal or transformer).

As a former utility operations guy, I've pretty much seen it all.

I've even heard of flexible radiator hoses used to steal natural gas when the meter has been removed. As that doesn't provide a pressure regulator, that technique often ends poorly.
Wow, people are ballsy.

If someone pulls a smart meter does it alert the utility company immediately?
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Old 06-17-2012, 10:38 AM   #27
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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.........If someone pulls a smart meter does it alert the utility company immediately?

Some, but not all.
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Old 06-17-2012, 10:44 AM   #28
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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Wow, people are ballsy.

If someone pulls a smart meter does it alert the utility company immediately?
No, it doesn't work like that. The meters are "polled" periodically and are not in constant communication with the utility's computers. It could be as infrequently as once per month (to support billing) or as often as every 5 minutes. In periods of high demand, the polling is often suspended as it it takes quite a bit of energy demand for the polling process - as much as 300 kva per 10 megawatt feeder.
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Old 06-17-2012, 11:02 AM   #29
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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In periods of high demand, the polling is often suspended as it it takes quite a bit of energy demand for the polling process - as much as 300 kva per 10 megawatt feeder.
Now that's interesting; never knew that. I always assumed they worked with something like low-power ELF.

Looks like I have today's Google project lined up.
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Old 06-17-2012, 11:11 AM   #30
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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Now that's interesting; never knew that. I always assumed they worked with something like low-power ELF.

Looks like I have today's Google project lined up.
I guess it depends on the communication system. Most (but not all )systems use a power line carrier system where signals are injected on the utility's distribution primary and have to pass through the distribution transformer to get to the meter. Supposedly, it has the most robust communications capability compared to cellular or radio and is more reliable (think of dropped calls or radio static). But it also has the limitation of not being able to communicate back to the host when the power is off as there is no pathway.
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Old 06-17-2012, 03:11 PM   #31
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


Isant there a special key that's inserted into the meter for it to be able to be pulled?
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Old 06-17-2012, 03:15 PM   #32
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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Isant there a special key that's inserted into the meter for it to be able to be pulled?

Nope. Just cut the little wire lock and pull the meter by hand.
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Old 06-17-2012, 03:16 PM   #33
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


Interesting. By me there's a thing called a barrel lock key. Or is that just to get into the box?
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Old 06-17-2012, 03:28 PM   #34
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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Interesting. By me there's a thing called a barrel lock key. Or is that just to get into the box?



Yes, you need a special key to undo a barrel lock. But after that, it's the same... pull the meter.
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Old 06-17-2012, 04:53 PM   #35
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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Yes, you need a special key to undo a barrel lock. But after that, it's the same... pull the meter.
The locking ring sparkles posted is for a ring style socket and is possibly the hardest to defeat as the meter usually has to be out to lift the latch hoding the cover to the base.

A ringless socket is less secure. The utility can use a barrell lock or a regular hasp style lock in the large hole on the latching mechanism.

What sparkles isn't saying is that neither is much of an obstacle to someone who knows what they're doing.
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Old 06-17-2012, 05:33 PM   #36
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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.......What sparkles isn't saying is that neither is much of an obstacle to someone who knows what they're doing.
What I will say is it's a crime in many areas to mess with any of this stuff.
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Old 06-17-2012, 05:37 PM   #37
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


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What I will say is it's a crime in many areas to mess with any of this stuff.
For sure, unless you have been "deputized".
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Old 06-17-2012, 08:51 PM   #38
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


You guys ever see the "Peerless Security" plastic lock rings? They used them when they started installing smart meters but stopped for some reason.
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Old 06-18-2012, 11:40 AM   #39
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


Just had a similar one recently. Someone went into the POCO transformer cabinet outside of a vacant business/warehouse. Cut the live primary side (13,900 volts) and stole all of the copper out of the cabinet. They missed the concentric ground braid by about 1/2" with their cutters. It must have arced because one of the cutouts on the pole was tripped. Most likely we would have found the charred remains had they hit the ground braid directly with their cutters.
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Old 06-24-2012, 01:14 PM   #40
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Re: Someone Went To A Lot Of Trouble....


The truly messed up thing about metal thieves is that it's not worth THAT much money. He caused probably 20K worth of damage for MAYBE $200 worth of scrap copper. He should do some time for that one imo.

Around here, bit rooftop A/C units are getting destroyed for the few hundred dollars worth of copper in them. Destroying a 50K unit for that little money is just beyond ridiculous...

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