PUBLIC SAFETY AT RISK BY THEFT OF SIGNAL BATTERIES
Thieves targeting Ni-Cad batteries are putting the public at risk by tampering with safety items at railway crossings. Since early June, brazen thieves have broken into five Southern Railway of Vancouver Island (SVI) signal sheds and stolen 45 batteries worth about $30,000.
SVI Superintendent Al Kutaj commented, “Our railway line is still active and our track service vehicles regularly pass through these crossings. Although our operators are vigilant when approaching any grade crossing, the risk of an accident with a vehicle increases when signals don’t work.”
Kutaj believes the thieves are supplying specific clients looking for batteries for solar systems. They are not simply looking for a few dollars in scrap value as it actually costs to dispose Ni-Cad batteries.
Although police have some witnesses to the last two thefts, Kutaj encourages the public to be vigilant and report all suspicious activity around the signal sheds to the police. Anyone approached with offer of a deal on Ni-Cad batteries should also report this to the police.
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