Smart meters detect 600 water leaks

Smart metres detect 600 leaks

NEW METERS installed in Malaga are helping to lower water bills in Malaga City.

The devices, which warn of possible leaks and monitor consumption in real time, have found almost 600 leaks since being installed in April.

Customer service operators monitor the 41,663 meters installed in Malaga, telephoning customers if they detect a problem.  Raul Jimenez, Councillor for Environmental Sustainability, explained the service helps customers, saying, “since we spent a lot money getting this data it is normal we use it for the benefit of all residents.”  He added the meters check yearly household expenditure and average consumption, giving clients more control over their bills.

The council explained most of the leaks identified were small and would have been hard to find if not for the meters.  Water supplier Emasa said most clients fixed their leaks within 10 days of being told about them.  Once repaired, an updated invoice is sent out.

Meanwhile, around 750 families were last month left without water after a cleaning mishap.

Residents in Mriaflores del Palo had their supply reinstated within a week after workers allegedly poured detergent into a well causing foam to pour from taps across the town.

Pilar Gutierrez, manager of the Miraflores del Palo conservation entity, said the community’s deposito had been emptied and refilled with drinking water.

National Police started investigating after receiving reports from concerned residents and soon established three people had thrown the liquid down a well after cleaning a storage room in the Calle Pintor Enrique Florido building.

Police believe the incident was unintentional and explained the product was non-toxic and had a PH of zero, although it does have a strong smell.  Officers were able to find the alleged culprits quickly after eight empty containers of sodium sulphate were found in the trash near to the well.   Police were able to take fingerprints from the containers, allowing them to identify the workers. The chemical, which is used for foam parties, is the base detergent in many household products including shampoo and toothpaste.

Felix Benitez, president of the Miraflores del Palo Urban Conservation Collaboration Entity, said he began receiving calls from confused residents at around 10.30pm.  He explained, “several residents told us they were having problems with the water in their homes which had a strong smell and contained a lot of foam.”  He added the organisation soon put their “hands to work to try to find out what happened.”

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