Power out in 40-50 homes in Wynberg homes due to insistent cable theft in the area

Power out in 40-50 homes in Wynberg homes due to insistent cable theft in the area Picture: Antoine de Ras. 28/07/09

Power out in 40-50 homes in Wynberg homes due to insistent cable theft in the area Picture: Antoine de Ras. 28/07/09

Published Jun 11, 2024


Cape Town - Several homes in Wynberg were cut off from their electricity supply as a result of cable theft yesterday.

Ward councillor Carmen Siebritz said about six streets with between 40 and 50 homes were impacted by power outages as a result of the theft.

The affected streets were Mission Road, Vine Road, Sussex Road, Good Hope Road, Shiplake Road and Lower Piers Road.

Siebritz said the latest incident of cable theft occurred in Mission Road, with the first complaint received at about 6am yesterday.

She said 30 metres of three overhead conductors were stolen.

“It’s not something that started happening recently. It’s something that’s been coming on for a while. It started on a Broad Road and they now seem to be moving towards the Castletown Road, Mission Road side of things,” Siebritz said.

On February 21, Siebritz tabled a motion at subcouncil, requesting the Department of Energy to consider underground cabling throughout the ward.

She said the trees were used by thieves to reach the cables.

“Because of the trees and their heritage status, we can’t remove the trees. So all we can do is continuously trim the trees but you can’t also trim a tree every week so I do believe the underground cabling is what will work for us,” she said.

“Because we have such vigilant residents in the area, I believe the underground cabling will assist because, to get the cabling underground, you need to knock out the ground and that will obviously be heard, it will be seen and so they will think twice, thrice, even five times before actually knocking out any ground because they know that the neighbours are going to be vigilant.”

A Byrnes Avenue resident, who spoke to the Cape Argus on condition of anonymity, said while he was not impacted by yesterday’s outage, they were affected by power outages as well as no running water last week.

“I am 75 years old already and it’s not nice for somebody my age, and in my flat, there is a lady downstairs, she’s 99 years old and she’s a sickly woman. Sometimes, if it doesn’t affect our area, you hear about it. It happens all over here,” he said.

Mayco member for energy Beverley van Reenen said the City recorded 223 incidents of electricity vandalism and illegal connections in the first quarter this year at a cost of about R6.26 million.

She added that the metro’s Area South, which includes Wynberg, was the hardest hit with 57% of incidents.

Van Reenen said the City is continuing with and rolling out interventions to reduce the impact of the “crisis levels” of electricity infrastructure theft and vandalism in many areas across the metro, alongside the Energy Safety Team that the City put in place last year.

She urged residents to report suspicious activities at or near electricity infrastructure to the City’s law enforcement agencies or the City’s Fraud Hotline at 0800 1100 77 or to the police.

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Cape Argus