This is a common water meter as found in the USA. Notice the white arrow. Just above it is the shut off valve. The photo is from Google Images. My meter is in a much deeper hole and the valve is much more difficult to reach for those times when I need to do a plumbing repair in the house and need the water to be "off." This Instructable will describe the water meter key I made from scraps welded together.
Step 1: What you can buy
This is a commercially available water meter key. They are not very expensive, but I have a welder and had some suitable scraps materials on hand.