THE deadly danger of thieves cutting and leaving live power cables on the ground was highlighted by a power company as police appealed for information on the thefts.

Ashley Pillay, of National Grid in Plymouth, said: ‘The thieves have been cutting into live power cables which is incredibly dangerous.

‘Those responsible are putting themselves at high risk of serious injury or even death.

‘Their recklessness is endangering unwitting passers-by who might not see live cables on the ground, as well as our engineers who arrive on scene, sometimes at night, to repair the damage.

‘As a result of the last four incidents, the thieves have caused a large number of customers to lose power for up to six hours.’

Devon and Cornwall Police are appealing for information from members of the public after another reported theft of copper from electricity lines in South Devon.

The most recent theft took place just before 6pm on Sunday, January 22, close to the Cadleigh Park area of Ivybridge.

This follows nine previous incidents, starting in December and continuing throughout January taking place around south Dartmoor, Plympton, Harscombe, Denham Bridge, Sparkwell, and the Lee Moor area.

A police spokesperson said: ‘Police are interested to speak to anyone who may have been in the Endsleigh Park Industrial Estate area on Sunday, 22nd January, at approximately 6pm who saw any vehicles or suspicious activity in the field opposite the Cadleigh Park entrance/exit to Endsleigh.

‘Police are also particularly interested in receiving Dashcam footage captured of the area at that time.’

Devon & Cornwall Police Acting Chief Inspector Steve Philp said: ‘These are well organised thieves who are stealing equipment for its metal value and we would appeal to anyone who is offered suspicious cables to get in touch.

‘Due to the weight of the cable, we believe it would take at least two people using a pickup truck or a van.

‘Members of the public are reminded that staff from National Grid will always be wearing full uniform, carrying ID and be driving a marked vehicle.

‘If you do witness individuals working on the power lines without the appropriate uniform, please call 999.’

Devon & Cornwall Police appeal for anyone with information to contact them via 101, or the website quoting Operation Langstone reference 50220058345. You can also report anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800555111 or via the charity’s website at