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Goulburn Valley Water (GVW) is set to roll out a multimillion-dollar project to install intelligent meters in several towns to help reduce water wastage and detect leaks early.

Intelligent meters will be trialled in four high-growth towns – Kialla, Kilmore, Broadford and Mansfield. Older intelligent meters in Woods Point and Barmah installed several years ago will also be replaced, as they’ve reached the end of their life.

The project will create a number of benefits for customers and GVW, including real-time water usage information, more accurate meter reads, the ability to identify cost savings and network efficiencies, and quicker leak detection.

Waste collection, recycling and water treatment specialist SUEZ has been announced as the successful contractor for the project.

Installation will begin in early 2021, with about 11,700 mechanical meters supplying customers to be upgraded as part of a staged rollout in the six towns. Results from the trial stage of the meter replacement project will determine GVW’s future commitment to installing meters across the rest of the service area.

Customers will be kept up to date as the project nears their town, and people are encouraged to provide feedback to GVW.

GVW General Manager Planning and Assets, Daniel Hughes, said the meters would provide a level of detail that would be beneficial to both customers and GVW.

“The digital data we receive will help us make more informed decisions for managing our water supply systems, including how we prioritise repairs and schedule infrastructure upgrades,” Mr Hughes said.

“Other benefits of collecting near-real time data include more accurate billing, detecting leaks earlier in both the GVW water pipe network and at customer properties, and eliminating the need to send meter readers to access customer properties.”

Digital meters do not pose a health risk to customers or the community, and customers will not be charged for the new meters.

Data is transmitted through low level radio frequency waves, which are well within Australian safety standards. 

The meter trial is voluntary in that customers will be offered an opportunity to opt out of the project and retain their current meter. More information on this will be provided to each customer as the project nears implementation in their town.

Customers will be kept informed about the project rollout through social media updates, letters, SMS messages, and website information at https://www.gvwater.vic.gov.au/projects/current-projects/intelligent-metering-project.

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