Lake resident Jim Erler is holding multiple informational meetings for the public at Smith Mountain Lake and Lake Anna in the coming days to discuss the ongoing issue of stray electricity around docks.
Erler recently submitted a formal proposal to the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development to change regulations in the Virginia Construction Code. He is working to change the code to eliminate the requirement for a ground wire from a home to a dock.
Erler, an electrical engineer and physicist, has found that stray electricity can travel from the street, to the home and then to the dock through the ground wire. The electricity can then travel into the water around a dock from any metal. One of the most common sources are boat lifts when they are lowered into the water.
Erler is looking for public support when the proposed change is reviewed at a public work group meeting by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development on Aug. 21 in Richmond.
If approved in the work group, the proposed change would move to the Virginia House of Delegates for a vote on the change.
Erler and other individuals working to change the electrical code will hold public meetings at Saunders Volunteer Fire Department in Huddleston on Aug. 8 at 6 p.m. and at Scruggs Volunteer Fire Department in Scruggs on Aug. 15 at 6 p.m.