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Theft causes thousands to lose power

By Bonnie Silkman , Weekend GMC Anchor / Reporter , bonnie.silkman@krdo.com
Published On: Jan 29 2014 01:35:38 PM CST

Theft causes thousands to lose power

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -

More than 3,000 people in Colorado Springs lost power Tuesday morning. But it wasn't the frigid temperatures or the snow.

Someone vandalized a utilities substation. We're told someone broke in to steal ground copper wires.

The outage included parts of southeast Colorado Springs near Circle, Platte and Academy.

"We had a pretty substantial copper theft in the substation. It’s an extremely dangerous situation. It caused an outage. The entire substation was lost," said Corey Marchant, of Colorado Springs Utilities.

He was called to the scene shortly after the outage.

Despite all the "no trespassing" signs and hazard warnings, someone cut the fence open, went inside and stole the copper ground wires.

"It has to do with the price of copper. Thieves take what they can and sell it for cash. Unfortunately the amount of money they get, doesn't really relate to how much it cost to repair,” explains Marchant.

"Selfish people that have no consideration for anyone else that's frustrating actually," said a woman who lost her power.

"Stealing these grounds is not just an inconvenience but it’s dangerous for everyone. The high voltages and high currents we have in the substation, any workers can be injured or even killed by the potential differences inside. It's a very dangerous situation when we have our grounds stolen. I'm surprised nobody got hurt in this," said Marchant.

Colorado Springs police are investigating the incident.

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