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Hydro One warns of the risks of copper theft

Aug 5, 2011

TORONTO, Aug. 5, 2011 /CNW/ - Hydro One is urging Ontario residents to call Crime Stoppers to report suspected copper theft from its stations and facilities in an attempt to fight a rise of incidents that cause a serious safety concern. Last weekend a young male was badly burned in Toronto while allegedly attempting to steal copper from a transformer station.

"Stealing the copper fittings that ground high-voltage equipment is extremely dangerous. Copper thieves risk serious or fatal injury, and put employees, first responders and the public at risk," said Myles D'Arcey, Hydro One Senior Vice President of Operations. "It's dangerous for Hydro One employees to enter a transformer station after a theft has occurred and work around high voltage equipment that is not properly grounded."

Copper wire theft continues to increase in North America, and Hydro One has been the target of a growing number of thefts in recent months, from an average of 10 per month six months ago to 16 per month this summer. Hydro One continues to welcome the assistance of police and scrap dealers' associations in targeting thieves, and to also welcome the assistance of members of the public who can report suspected copper theft by calling Crime Stoppers anonymously.

To report a suspected theft anonymously, Ontario residents can call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.

Hydro One first partnered with Crime Stoppers in 2007, and this program continues to be an important link in the fight against copper theft. Hydro One also works with the Ontario Provincial Police and municipal police forces, as well as scrap dealers' associations to help police and businesses identify and report stolen copper.

Hydro One delivers electricity safely, reliably and responsibly to homes and businesses across the province of Ontario and owns and operates Ontario's 29,000 km high-voltage transmission network that delivers electricity to large industrial customers and municipal utilities, and a 123,000 km low-voltage distribution system that serves about 1.3 million end-use customers and smaller municipal utilities in the province. Hydro One is wholly owned by the Province of Ontario.

For further information:

contact Hydro One Media Relations 24 hours a day at 1-877-506-7584 (toll-free in Ontario only) or 416-345-6868. Visit our website at