Tracing, finding, and reading LUMs can be a tricky undertaking for a meter reading provider. An experienced and accomplished specialist data collection company is therefore instrumental in providing water companies with the data they need to resolve their LUM portfolio. Take the example of a recent Occutrace case.

We were sent to a meter read in a small village in the North of England, with only the note that the meter was located at the “rear of the property” (being a local post office) to go on. As you can see on the snapshots below, the site did not give us much to work with at all.

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Having examined the area around the property, we have found no sign of the chamber. The most prudent next step was to continue looking around the neighbouring bushes and undergrowth, but when this also returned no results, our team’s search continued.

After assessing the surrounding areas and consulting several staff members inside the Post Office building, we were advised to check a compound round the back – the compound in question being a car park, with no sign whatsoever of the chambers we required.

Finally, and with a little bit of direction from some helpful locals, we were able to locate the meter chamber on a neighbouring road under a sizeable pile of rubble.

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Upon lifting the chamber lid, we were required to dig out a large chunk of soil in order to physically access the meter itself.

With the soil moved and the immediate area cleared of debris, you can see the meter in a much more manageable, much more readable state.

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We found what we were after so another job is done!

After any job like this it is important to ensure the site is left as we found it, tidying away any equipment and clearing away any potential hazards for locals in the surrounding area.

Thus, we have placed the chamber into its initial position and cleared the soil away.

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While conducting a debrief of the completed job, we were informed by some locals that the meter had not been read in (their estimate) 15 years!

Watch a video version of this blog here.


Why resolving long unreads is important for water suppliers

When a meter is not read for the length of time as this particular example, bills are estimated, leaving customers frustrated, paying hand over fist for inaccurate data and faced with the prospect of both financial and reputational damage.

As you can see from the above example, our experienced meter investigators take extra care to locate a meter, to provide the customer with the reading. Otherwise, our clients will receive detailed notes and supplementary information recorded via the Occutrace app. These notes will be the evidence and their first step on the way to taking further action.

Because of our technology and experienced people on the ground, Occutrace can help find and resolve the long unreads that no one else can. On average, we are able to read 88% of LUMs. To learn more download our white paper or get in touch to arrange a free demo.