Marianas Variety

Last updateWed, 22 May 2019 12am







    Tuesday, May 21, 2019-1:52:32A.M.






Font Size


CUC: 90% of Smart water meters defective

COMMONWEALTH Utilities Corp. acting chief engineer for the water and wastewater division Larry Manacop told a federal judge that the 10,000 Smart water meters installed in 2004 had a 90 percent failure rate.

At a recent status hearing in federal court, designated Judge David O. Carter noted the recurring issues with CUC water meters. “It is important that we know what the facts are — without knowing what the problem is, it does not make sense to put money in that system.”

Manacop said “Smart” is the brand name of the water meters installed in 2004, adding that the company later replaced 6,000 units on warranty. But, he added, 90 percent of the 6,000 replacement meters also failed.

CUC also informed the judge about the recent purchase of 6,000 Sensus water meters.

Garry Byrd, CUC water and wastewater division manager, said there is a continuing need to purchase water meters. CUC is also evaluating its existing water meters to see what caused their failure, he said.

“If we have to choose a different company that is what we will do,” he added.

Byrd said there are a number of challenges and obstacles they face in their effort to provide 24-hour water service islandwide Among them are water quality, theft, illegal taps, jungle lines, interconnection, undersized piping, topography, right-of way-issues, leaks and malfunctioning meters.

In Nov. 2008, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency cited CUC for violations of the Clean Water Act and the Safe Drinking Water Act, and lodged Stipulated Orders 1 and 2 in federal court.