Copper thieves strike again at Maritime Electric substation
Copper thieves broke into the Dingwells Mills substation on Saturday 20th October.
“They took out a lot of the grounding out of the substation, so if by chance our crews went in to do work it could have been a very different discussion,”
Kim Griffin Maritime spokesperson said. “Our crews could have been seriously harmed or electrocuted.” Griffin said they don’t know when the copper was stolen, but workers who were at the substation the day before the employee didn’t notice any damage.
Griffin said it was virtually impossible for repair crews to get into the site safely at first, and the technician who noticed the damage was lucky he wasn’t hurt. The employee who noticed the damage was shaken up by the incident, and Maritime Electric is thankful he wasn’t hurt.
Power had to be shut off at the substation, which serves thousands of customers in eastern P.E.I., for two hours on Saturday while crews repaired the damage. “It’s been a really challenging day for us and luckily we saw it before anyone went into the substation and any of our crews were harmed,” Griffin said. “The dollar amount in terms of copper tends not to be very significant, in the hundreds of dollars, and I guess that’s why we’re so perplexed why people are still trying to take away the copper.”
People stealing copper from substations are continuing to put themselves and others at risk according to Maritime Electric. The utility has increased security at its substations after several break-ins this year.
This year, substations have been vandalized in Lorne Valley, West St. Peter’s, Dingwells Mills, Scotchfort and Souris.
RCMP were called and are investigating.
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