A saw that a suspected cable thief was using to cut through a cable when he was electrocuted to death. Picture: City Power
A saw that a suspected cable thief was using to cut through a cable when he was electrocuted to death. Picture: City Power

Suspected cable thief electrocuted to death, plunges parts of West Rand into darkness

By Botho Molosankwe Time of article published Apr 22, 2021

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Johannesburg – A man who was allegedly trying to steal a cable died when he was electrocuted and plunged nearby areas into darkness.

His body was discovered by City Power officials who had gone to the substation to investigate the cause of the outage.

His tools were found next to him.

According to City Power’s Isaac Mangena, if there is any fiddling of the infrastructure, their protection system activates and trips the network.

He said this is what happened when the man was busy sawing through a cable that is all steel and not insulated. He was electrocuted and that tripped the network and plunged areas in Roodepoort into darkness.

“The unknown person was found by our technicians responding to an outage after the Pennyville/Halite distributor tripped around 10pm.

“Upon investigations, the technicians found the person had died after an electrocution.

“It's believed the victim was killed when he tried to steal the cable. He was lying near an 11kV pylon with cable feeding the overhead cut line. His tools were also near him.

“Paramedics and the police attended to the scene,” he said, adding that a team has been dispatched to replace the cable.

City Power chief executive Mongezi Ntsokolo said cable theft was a serious problem, not only because it inconveniences customers, but also because they lose millions in lost revenue.

“We apologise to the affected residents, and will update on the progress of the repairs.

The management of City Power have extended their condolences to the family of the unknown man.

IOL

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