City Power Hursthill supply zone hit by cable theft wave

Entity says they are continuing efforts to change City policies as they relate to scrap metal dealerships where stolen cables are often sold.

Load-shedding is enough on its own to frustrate residents and hurt local businesses. Add into the mix City Power into the mix with its infrastructure theft and damage and emotions often boil over.

Ward 88 councillor Nicolene Jonker said there has been an increase in cable theft in and around East Town and Roosevelt Park. “If your power goes off and it is not load-shedding or due to a storm, please notify your security company to check the area immediately.”

She said all private security companies are a great help in looking around for individuals with hardware if there has been cable theft for example.

City Power spokesman Isaac Mangena said, “We have observed with great concern an increase in incidents of tampering with the electricity infrastructure, cable theft and vandalism of our equipment across all our areas of supply in the city. In January alone, we have had around 16 cases of cable theft and vandalism across the Hursthill supply zone.”

City Power cables spread out to show the metal wiring that so many criminals are after to sell as scrap metal. Photo: Emily Wellman Bain

Those in or near the Northcliff Melville Times footprint are as follows:

  • 2 in Bosmont
  • 2 in Hursthill
  • 2 in Mayfair
  • One each in Hursthill, Brixton, Roosevelt Park, Windsor West, Auckland Park, and Newlands.

Mangena says intelligence gathered by internal security management structures identifies the main reason for cable theft, is the resale value of the scrap metal. “That’s why we have been advocating for the ban on the sale of metal scrap because it creates a demand for this commodity. We have in the past, raided several metal scrap yards and recovered a lot of stolen cable.”

In addition to advocating for policy changes relating to the sale of scrap metal which the entity believes would tilt the scale considerably, they are continuously working on increasing security and employing new technology.

City Power spokesperson Isaac Mangena.

“The monitoring of our vast network is key. We are also working with businesses and communities through a programme where they adopt key infrastructure such as transformers in their areas to patrol around and monitor.”

“We are also working closely with law enforcement agencies to ensure that when arrests are made, they have strong prosecutable cases. In this vein, we have called on the judiciary to harden its fists when dealing with criminals who, in our view, are committing heinous economic crimes. We are calling for harsher criminal sanctions to send a strong message to perpetrators.”

Customers are encouraged to use the recently launched new toll-free line phone line dedicated to escalating power supply interruptions exceeding 24 hours.

“This line can also be used for updates on prolonged area outages as well as reporting suspicious activities around our network infrastructure,” said Mangena.

The new toll-free line number is 0800 003 156 which operates daily from 06:00 -18:00.

Contact City Power Risk Control on 011 490 7900 or 011 490 7911 if you see anyone digging or fiddling with infrastructure, even if they are wearing City Power regalia to confirm if they are genuine workers or not.

Related Article: How to report damage to the City Power Infrastructure

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