Copper Theft

phatcyclist

Active Member
Feb 22, 2008
882
36
Austin, TX
http://www.news8austin.com/content/top_stories/default.asp?ArID=201860

Copper theft becoming serious issue
3/3/2008 8:01 PM
By: Bob Robuck

Copper wire: it's encased in concrete, protected by fencing, signage and patrols. Still, police said Eddie Castro -- and possibly others with him -- managed to get to the electrically charged copper.
But it came with a deadly price.
Jessie Hernandez witnessed the incident.
"I seen this dude walking," Hernandez said. "He was on fire from the neck down."

Castro's not the only one to break into an Austin Energy substation with the intent to steal copper.
Thieves hit at least eight other substations in Central and East Austin.
Austin Energy already has safety measures in place, and as a result of the latest incident, is installing more.
Ed Clark of Austin Energy said they have increased security.
"We have been increasing our security at substations at any of our facilities with both patrols, things that we do with the wire to make it more difficult to get to, substituting the wire with a blend of materials that make it less valuable," Clark said.
They are also increasing video surveillance, and the central monitoring site is where security personnel keep watchful eyes on substation camera feeds.
"If there's a crime in progress we'll call 911 and APD and immediately request police assistance," Oswald Colon of Austin Energy Security said.
For something less suspicious, they send a patrol.
Right now, only eight of Austin Energy's 65 substations are monitored with cameras.
There are plans to put in more, but that's a costly proposition.
It costs about $80,000-$100,000 to put in cameras at any one substation.
They're also putting in walls instead of fencing on any of their newer locations, but that's a double-edged sword because even though it can keep criminals out, it can also conceal them if they do get in.
But Austin Energy maintains that no matter what it does to protect people and equipment, if thieves want to get in they will.
And those that do, may pay for their crimes with their lives.
Not firearms related, but it is a good reason to dislike thieves. I hear about this on homes being built every once and a while, but this is a very extreme occurrence of it.
 

Texas1911

TGT Addict
May 29, 2017
10,623
38
Austin, TX
Yeah I heard about the guy that tried to steal some live wire and got judge, jury, and executioner in about 0.002 seconds from 5 billion watts. Those substations hum from all the juice going through them, and that certainly isn't worth the money you get from copper.

It's thieves though, and frankly I hope they all try it.
 

carneyman

Active Member
Feb 23, 2008
304
18
Tyler
This summer they stole a bunch of copper tubbing from a/c units on some trailer houses my boss manages. Made it a real pain for me to try and install window units in those places. There for a while he was wanting to encase the copper in pvc pipe filled with that expanding foam...I'm all for shocking the hell out of em!
 

chevydeerhunter

Well-Known
Feb 23, 2008
1,063
38
San Antonio
I know it's only March, but I'm nominating those idiots for Darwin Award of the Year for doing their part in voluntarily cleaning up the gene pool. Congrats!:)
 

SO758

Member
Mar 1, 2008
175
16
Central TX
Im having a house built, and I go by there pretty regular to make sure all the wiring and copper tubes are where they are supposed to be.
 

mac79912

Well-Known
BANNED!!!
Mar 4, 2008
1,666
36
#1 stolen item from construction sites out here.Unfortunately the guys stealing it here are going across the Border to Mexico with it.Its amazing that the Mexican officials just let these guys thru.If you give these cops a twenty you can commit murder.
 

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