Sometime in the past week, $1000 worth of copper ground wire was taken from a Falls Township PECO station.
According to police, someone entered the power station at Penn Avenue and Tyburn Road and cut the copper ground wire. The PECO station is located near the entrance to the old U.S. Steel plant.
The copper wiring was worth $1,000, but $50,000 in damaged was caused by the removal of the wiring, police said.
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Falls police did not report whether the incident was related to a similar crime last week in Bristol Township.
In that incident, two men were spotted trying to steal copper grounding from the PECO facility in the 7100 block of Mill Creek Road in Bristol Township, PhillyBurbs.com reported.
One suspect was arrested and another evaded a large police ground search, the website reported.
As the sale price of copper increases, so does the theft of it.
The National Insurance Crime Bureau reported this year that the theft of base metals, including copper, has increased nearly 50 percent since the last survey from the ground.
A 2009 study about utility companies discovered that close to 95 percent have reported the theft of copper.
Copper ground wire is used to protect life and safeguard power grid by acting as a safe path for excess electricity to disperse. It is used because it conducts electric currents better than most other metals.
“Copper thieves are threatening US critical infrastructure … and present a risk to both public safety and national security,” according to an FBI report on the topic.