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Probe goes on after power lines come down
3:07pm Thursday 6th February 2014 in Local news
A power company is investigating after overhead lines were brought to the ground in an incident which affected more than 900 homes in Guiseley.
Engineers are trying to establish the cause of the problem which led to a loss of power and low voltage for homes in the area.
The incident happened just weeks after Northern Powergrid warned that lives were being put at risk by thieves targeting overhead power lines across West Yorkshire – including cases in Ilkley and Arthington.
And a spokesman for the company said theft was one of the possible causes being investigated – although no evidence has been found at this stage to show what was responsible for the damage.
He said: “Overhead power lines were on the ground but there was no indication as to what caused it.”
The spokesman said the possibility of theft or vandalism was being investigated, along with other causes such as wind damage, and that the company was keeping an open mind.
“There is nothing to indicate that it is actually theft at this stage but theft as a whole is a massive problem and it is something we take very seriously because there can be loss of life,” he said.
More than 900 homes were affected in Guiseley on Monday but normal power was returned to all of the affected homes by the following day.
In January Northern Powergrid says innocent lives were being put at serious risk by thieves targeting overhead power lines across West Yorkshire.
It said in one week alone there were nine incidents of theft from the electricity network, including thefts in Ilkley and Arthington.
In many cases, thieves cut power lines carrying 11,000 volts, leaving the cable ends hanging dangerously across public roads and footpaths.
Mick Hickling, Head of Network Repairs at Northern Powergrid, said: “The cost of the repair is not our primary concern. It’s the significant risk to public life that worries us most of all.
"Our power lines are over public land and cross footpaths and roads, so the potential danger to safety is significant.
"Our engineers will always respond extremely quickly once they’re made aware of damage to the electricity network to make our equipment safe, but it could be a member of the public who comes across the damage first.
“We appeal to people living and working locally to be alert to any suspicious activity around our power lines and to notify us, the police on 101 or the charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111 immediately. One phone call could save someone’s life.”