City warn­ing on elec­tric­ity me­ter hous­ing struc­tures

Zululand Observer - Weekender - - ZO NEWS - Or­rin Singh

CITY busi­nesses are urged to se­cure their elec­tric­ity me­ter boxes or struc­tures, or face hav­ing their elec­tric­ity sup­ply cut off.

This af­ter the mu­nic­i­pal­ity noted that many me­ter boxes are in dis­re­pair and left open, thus al­low­ing unau­tho­rised per­sons to ac­cess live elec­tri­cal equip­ment.

Un­hin­dered ac­cess to the boxes can lead to fa­tal ac­ci­dents and tam­per­ing, with premises own­ers held li­able for such in­ci­dents.

Ac­cord­ing to the mu­nic­i­pal­ity, while the me­ter­ing equip­ment in­side a box is the prop­erty of the uMh­lathuze Mu­nic­i­pal­ity, the main­te­nance of the struc­tures hous­ing the elec­tri­cal equip­ment, in­clud­ing the doors, are the re­spon­si­bil­ity of the owner of the prop­erty in terms Sec­tion 45 of uMh­lathuze Mu­nic­i­pal­ity’s Elec­tric­ity by-laws which state: ‘Me­ter­ing ac­com­mo­da­tion:

(1) Only where re­quired by the en­gi­neer, the cus­tomer shall pro­vide ap­proved ac­com­mo­da­tion for switch gear and me­ter­ing equip­ment in a po­si­tion ac­cept­able by the en­gi­neer. The cus­tomer shall also pro­vide an ap­proved me­ter board com­plete with ad­e­quate con­duc­tors for the ser­vice provider’s me­ter­ing equip­ment, ser­vice ap­pa­ra­tus and pro­tec­tive de­vices. Such ac­com­mo­da­tion and pro­tec­tion shall be pro­vided and main­tained to the sat­is­fac­tion of the en­gi­neer at the cost of the owner.

(5) Only ap­pa­ra­tus in con­nec­tion with the sup­ply of elec­tric­ity shall be in­stalled or stored in ac­com­mo­da­tion for the ser­vice provider’s me­ter­ing equip­ment, un­less specif­i­cally ap­proved by the en­gi­neer in writ­ing.’

In a state­ment, the mu­nic­i­pal­ity pointed out ‘that own­ers are there­fore re­spon­si­ble for en­sur­ing that their me­ter rooms are se­cured and lock­able by means of a mu­nic­i­pal pad­lock, thus re­strict­ing va­grants from oc­cu­py­ing them and us­ing them as ac­com­mo­da­tion, which leads to van­dal­ism and sub­se­quently to un­war­ranted power in­ter­rup­tions.

‘Fail­ure to com­ply with the above could lead to the iso­la­tion of your elec­tric­ity sup­ply un­til the struc­ture, doors and frames have been re­paired and the De­part­ment of Elec­tric­ity has se­cured the me­ter room and/or kiosk with a mu­nic­i­pal pad­lock.’

Un­hin­dered ac­cess to a me­ter room by unau­tho­rized per­sons can lead to fa­tal ac­ci­dents and tam­per­ing Or­rin Singh

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