Australian power distributor AusNet expects to spend a further $175 million over the next year to stabilise its advanced metering infrastructure (AMI).
The electricity company, one of five operating in the state of Victoria, has attributed the additional expenditure to “difficulties” with the performance of its AMI system, reports Australia’s ITNews.
The distributor said that while it had installed 686,000 smart meters, only 390,000 had successfully come online as the system was struggling to deal with the increasing load of connected units.
AusNet announced this week it had completed a technical review of metering technology and concluded it needs to spend $175 million between now and the end of 2015 to stabilise the system.
AusNet had flagged up concerns earlier this year warning that there was a risk of further expenditure “as with all large-scale and complex projects”, the local website reports.
AusNet was one of five distributors charged with the task of installing smart meters to every household and small business by the end of 2013.
Having missed the deadline to deploy 714,000 smart meters, AusNet confirmed it needed a further six months to complete the work.
The additional costs linked to the rollout add to AusNet’s financial woes as the distributor faces a $37.5 million rebate bill to customers who have yet to receive their smart meter unit.
In January this year we reported that Victoria’s smart meter rollout is more than 90% complete, with more than 2.5 million meters installed at homes and small businesses across the state, according to government statistics.