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Police: Copper thieves damage substation, leave hundreds in the dark

Police believe thieves may have burn injuries

EAST SAINT CLAIR TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- State police in Bedford County were searching for those responsible for stealing cooper wire at an electric substation that resulted in more than 1,000 customers to lose power.

Police said a person or persons cut through a fence at the Bedford Rural Electric substation on the 500 block of Quaker Valley Road (Route 56) in East Saint Clair Township between 8 and 8:15 p.m. Tuesday.

Once inside, police said the copper grounding wire to three transformer regulators was cut, causing extensive damage to the regulators.

The heat was so great coming from where the cuts happened, that it melted some of the concrete where the regulators were sitting, police said.

At least 1,500 customers lost power, police said. The thief got away with approximately 10 feet of copper wire.

Police said it was likely those who committed the theft have some type of burn injury. Anyone noticing someone with unusual burn marks on their body was asked to call police.

An exact amount of damage was not yet determined, officials said.

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Edgar Snyder

Washington Times