Two women protesting in Rohnert Park Tuesday morning against PG&E's installation of SmartMeters were arrested by police after they blocked a truck.
Deborah Tavares, 61, of Sebastopol and Ilona Gallo, 59, of Novato were arrested at about 8:15 a.m. outside of a State Farm Drive business.
"The two had refused to move from the driveway entrance and chose to be arrested instead of moving like the others," said Lt. Pat Strauss.
The women were in a group of about 15 people from EMF Safety Network, a Sebastopol-based group that has been vocal against the meters.
The group Tuesday morning was outside Wellington Energy, which contracts with PG&E to install the new meters.
Wellington is based in Pittsburgh and has been working out of the Rohnert Park office for its Sonoma County contract.
Lt. Strauss said the women were blocking a big rig from pulling into the business and it was causing traffic problems.
"It was quite a hazard," he said.
The two women were arrested on suspicion of refusing lawful orders of a police officer, a misdemeanor. They were handcuffed and taken to Sonoma County Jail and booked on the charge.
In late December, two Marin County women were arrested at a similar protest in West Marin.
Strauss said he had heard of no further issues at the protest.
Tuesday's action was the latest in a series of protests at the Rohnert Park site by the Sonoma County group.
Tavares was acting as protest leader, said Sandy Maurer of the EMF Safety Network.
PG&E is installing the new meters statewide. They eliminate the need for meter readers as they have a "smart grid" allowing consumers to access their energy use data in real time online. They also give the company immediate use and billing information.
A main concern from an increasingly vocal group of opponents is that the radio frequencies used to transmit data from the SmartMeters could add to health problems.
Maurer said Tuesday's group also was protesting the forced nature of the deployment of the meters and concerns of privacy violations.
No definitive links between radio frequencies and ill health have been found by the World Health Organization, American Cancer Society and other major health organizations. In an earlier interview, Tavares said the group considers those studies and PG&E efforts to protect their customers inadequate.
PG&E spokesman Jeff Smith Tuesday called the arrests unfortunate.
"It's not something we desire to have happen," Smith said Tuesday.
He said the company wants to continue talking to customers about their issues of concern and that PG&E's position is that it will continue to roll out the meters due to the benefits they offer customers, including immediate information regarding use.