Happy ending for homeowner in SCE utility pole flap

Southern California Edison personnel at work near Claremont resident Bob Mendez's home on May 3. Courier photo/Andrew Alonzo

By Andrew Alonzo | aalonzo@claremont-courier.com

As of May 3, Claremont resident Bob Mendez is once again a happy customer of Southern California Edison. Eight months and six days after SCE installed an oversized remote sectional recloser at the top of a utility pole next to his home, the electric providers moved to replace the massive fixture with a downsized RSR unit meant to perform the task of switching on or off parts of the area’s electric grid during a system failure.

Before the can of worms was opened, Mendez said his property, on which Edison had an easement, was fitted with a standard telephone pole. SCE workers then installed the RSR unit to the utility pole on August 28, 2023, without advanced notice.

“It was just a very industrial looking device,” Mendez said. He said there were potential dangers associated with the RSR unit, including electric and magnetic field exposure or the risk of the unit falling on his home in a windstorm, not to mention the possible negative impact on nearby property values.


Before and after: last August, Southern California Edison installed the large remote sectional recloser, on the left, on a pole next to Claremont resident Bob Mendez’s home. After numerous requests to swap it out with something smaller, on May 3 the utility did just that, on right. Photos/courtesy of Bob Mendez


“Once we made Edison aware of our concerns, we were able to speak with one of the representatives, they met with us, and we worked out a plan,” Mendez said.

The utility replaced the large RSR with a smaller unit.

“I think as soon as the Edison folks saw it for themselves, they realized that a change needed to be made,” Mendez said. “And you know they found a solution that we were happy with. The resolution is totally in line with the look and feel of the neighborhood.”

Mendez thanked the City of Claremont for acting, and SCE’s Marissa Castro-Salvati and Albert Diaz for their roles in resolving the issue.


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