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Honolulu Board Of Water Supply To Begin Islandwide Project This Month

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Casey Harlow / HPR
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Board of Water Supply Manager and Chief Engineer Ernest Lau (right) discusses a year-long transponder replacement project to start later this month. The new transponder unit (black) will replace the top of meter (gray).

Honolulu's Board of Water Supply will soon begin a $5 million project to improve its meter reading system.

BWS officials announced Thursday they will be replacing 80,000 transponders in meter boxes at various public and private locations on O?ahu. The transponders allow the utility to more efficiently get water meter readings through an automated system.

The units were first installed in the mid-2000s, then the devices began failing in 2016.

BWS Manager and Chief Engineer Ernest Lau says the transponders have exceeded their service life, and replacing them will improve the system.

"With that higher efficiency, we'll be able to get the reads, and maybe save our customers some funds," said Lau.

Most of the meters are located in public areas, but some are on private property. Crews with water supply contractor Royal Contracting Co. will make arrangements with owners ahead of time to gain access to the property. Crews will be working seven days a week between 7:30 a.m. and 10:30 p.m.

BWS officials say water service will not be interrupted, and the project will not raise rates for customers.

Crews are planning to start replacing transponders in Leeward O?ahu sometime this month.

More information can be found on the Board of Water Supply website, or by calling the project hotline at 808-748-6500.

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