|San Jacinto News Times - Local News
Copyright 2013 - Polk County Publishing Company
Copper thieves cut power to thousands
LIVINGSTON – Around 1:30 a.m. on April 3, 2013, approximately 2,000 Sam Houston Electric Cooperative members in Liberty County experienced an outage due to copper theft. The theft occurred at the Cooperative's Hightower substation and affected members in the areas of FM 787, FM 2610, FM 2914 and FM 223. A supervisor, engineer and line crew were immediately dispatched to the substation and found that thieves had stolen the transformer's grounds, resulting in significant damage. Power was restored to around 900 Sam Houston EC members at 6:52am by rerouting and feeding from the Tarkington substation. Sam Houston EC's mobile substation was deployed to the Hightower location, allowing crews to restore power to the remaining members at 12:50pm. "Copper theft is a costly crime," Keith Stapleton, Sam Houston EC chief communications officer, said. "Thieves have no regard for their safety or, more importantly, for the safety of the people who are affected by their selfish and dangerous actions." In addition to being costly to the Cooperative and members, copper theft puts those who depend on electricity to power health care equipment at risk. Sam Houston EC asks that anyone who has any information regarding who was involved in this copper theft incident please contact the Liberty County Sheriff's Department.