Public Utility District No. 1 of Skagit County (Skagit PUD) in Washington state was at a crossroads, facing a number of challenges related to its meter reading system. Because the utility was using a touch-read/visual-read system, it was highly dependent on its water meter readers’ acquired route knowledge. Two of the PUD’s three meter readers were planning to retire soon, and it would take at least a year to hire and train new employees to fill their experienced shoes. At the same time, the community was growing at a steady pace, and a significant number of its existing meters were reaching the end of their useful lifecycle.
With an aging infrastructure, ongoing growth that would require an increasing number of new meter installations, maintenance and other tasks, as well as eminent employee retirements, Skagit PUD decided it was prudent to upgrade its system. An Automatic Meter Reading (AMR) system from Badger Meter has proved to be a highly effective solution.