Fears for public safety have sparked an investigation into the activities of suspected copper thieves across the Hunter.
According to police, copper earth tails were taken from more than 50 power poles along the Golden Highway close to Merriwa on June 9, before copper cables were stolen from a site near Wybong Road at Muswellbrook in July.
Last month there were also thefts of copper cables from a site near George Booth Drive at Cameron Park on July 7th, electrical wires were stolen near Regents Drive at New Lambton the following day, and copper cables were stolen from a site on Thomas Mitchell Drive at Muswellbrook on July 31.
There was an attempted theft on electrical wires near Kearsley at Cessnock and detectives are also investigating reports of similar electrical thefts believed to have occurred at Morisset and Awaba.
Investigators continue to pursue lines of inquiry surrounding the theft of copper and urge anyone with information to come forward.
Anyone with information about copper theft is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
The incidents have also prompted safety warnings from Ausgrid’s EGM of Field Operations, Sam Sofi, who said people are putting their lives at risk by interfering with live electrical assets.
“Copper theft is a serious public safety issue. Not only do the perpetrators put their own lives at risk, they also endanger the community by leaving powerlines exposed,
“Contact with powerlines can kill you. There are no second chances with electricity and no amount of copper is worth a life.”
If you see fallen powerlines always assume they are live, stay at least eight metres back and call Ausgrid on 13 13 88.