B.C. Hydro shut off power to the Vancouver Island village of Ditidaht Friday evening after thieves stole copper ground wire conductors from about 300 poles.
“This is an extremely dangerous crime and can expose not only the perpetrators of the crime, but the public and our employees, to significant risk,” said B.C. Hydro spokesman Ted Olynyk.
“It is fortunate these incidents didn’t result in any injuries or even fatalities.”
Power to the village of Ditidaht was cut off about 5 p.m. Friday. It is expected to be restored this afternoon, according to B.C. Hydro.
The wire was taken from poles on a remote 62-kilometre stretch between China Creek and Ditidaht, near Port Alberni.
Total cost of the theft is unknown, but substantial repairs will be needed, Olynyk said.
Port Alberni RCMP are asking for public assistance. Anyone with information on the theft is asked to call the department at 250-723-2424 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).
Last year, B.C. brought in a new law that requires metal dealers and recyclers to record details about people selling metal and to report purchases to police.
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