Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Smart Talk: 655 Shellane Ave.


A fire is a devastating and tragic event. As an organization, MLGW empathizes with the families affected by the fire at 655 Shellane Avenue. Our hearts go out to them. While we are all grateful that there were no fatalities, it is nonetheless traumatic as the fire consumed most, if not all, of the families’ possessions. After such a life-altering event, everyone asks, “Why?” In the search for answers, rash and inaccurate theories may surface.

The media has widely reported that the house fire was caused by a smart meter. The Memphis Fire Department has stated the contrary and issued a press release which says, "The origin and cause of the fire was determined to be electrical in the carport storage room." The full Fire Department press release is below.

The electric meter at 655 Shellane Ave. was not a smart meter; it was a regular digital meter. Digital meters are sometimes thought to be smart meters because they look similar. A smart meter is a digital meter which contains a small communication module and unless a person is familiar with metering technology, it is easy to confuse the two types of meters. Furthermore, meters regardless of the type, do not cause fires. A fire can be caused, however, by poor electrical connectivity in the socket that the meter plugs into. It is for this reason MLGW has inspected and fixed any damaged sockets identified during smart meter deployment.

Fire Department Report:

Lieutenant Wayne A. Cooke, Public Information Officer
Office: 901-636-5682 
Cell: 901-508-0614

June 8, 2015

655 Shellane Avenue

The Memphis Fire Department responded to a house fire at 655 Shellane Avenue, Sunday, June 7, 2015 at 3:07 p.m. Upon arrival on the scene, firefighters reported heavy fire visible from the one story wood-frame residential structure. Rescue and Firefighting operations began immediately.

Twelve (12) pieces of Fire/Rescue/EMS equipment and approximately twenty-eight (28) emergency response personnel ultimately responded to the call. Battalion Chief M. Tolliver was the commanding officer of this incident. The fire was brought under control at 3:25 p.m. There were no
firefighter or civilian injuries.

It has not been determined if the residence had a working smoke detector. The structure sustained smoke, fire and water damage. Total damage is estimated at $40,000 structure and $20,000 contents. The adjacent structure (649 Shellane) sustained $5,000 exterior damage. The origin and cause of the fire was determined to be electrical in the carport storage room. Red Cross provided assistance for two families.

The Memphis Fire Department urges all citizens to maintain a working smoke detector in their place of residence. City of Memphis residents may apply for a free smoke detector by completing an application on-line  or by contacting the Fire Museum of Memphis at (901) 636-5650. Always have a plan of escape in case there is a fire.

Also remember that 9-1-1 is for emergencies only.  For all other FIRE/ NON-EMERGENCY issues please dial (901) 458-8281.

1 comment:

Sharon Noble said...

No mention is made by the Public Information Officer of the fact that digital meters area electrical and are being put into a base that was designed to hold an analog meter which is not electrical. In fact the CSA, the agency that certified the base in conjunction with the analog, said that if anything else is put into the base, the CSA certification of the base would be nullified.
The digital meters have some of the same design flaws as the smart meters, and likely have been involved in fires. All of this information is being hidden from the public.

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