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Metal thieves target Downpatrick

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Retro Herbie
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Pond life strikes again. Folk who enjoy chariot races on the public highway have been linked with such thefts from numerous British preserved and mainline companies. Luckily they didn't have the copper out of the diesels, some locos in the UK have gone to scrapheap after such harvesting.

 

Some others have tried to have the copper cabling off the overhead catenery too, often with 'shocking' consequences...

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Pond life strikes again. Folk who enjoy chariot races on the public highway have been linked with such thefts from numerous British preserved and mainline companies. Luckily they didn't have the copper out of the diesels, some locos in the UK have gone to scrapheap after such harvesting.

 

Some others have tried to have the copper cabling off the overhead catenery too, often with 'shocking' consequences...

 

that's an insult to pond life as that can be interesting and worthwhile.

i see also in the uk a graveyard was targeted and 150 brass plaques were stolen.

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Its a pretty widespread problem apart from copper our local line has been targeted for cast iron and steel including steam locomotive tyres, rail and fixings.

 

A ban on the cash sale of scrap metal combined with joit clamp down by Revenue and Police on scrap merchants would largely eliminate the problem.

 

John

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Scrap prices are quite high now, and this will encourage the sort of filth who carry out these raids. Hopefully the PSNI will be successful in tracking them down. As an aside, the whole scrap trade needs to be regulated. Currently you can walk into any scrapyard and they'll weigh what you have and pay you cash, or cheques that can be cashed. In an age where money-laundering detection is up there with health & safety for strictness in compliance, this is a very obvious loophole.

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Actually the first cable theft i've heard of it Ireland.... I wonder if there have been others. In South Africa a few years ago, a devasting blow was made to the preservation movement there when several stored ssteam locos in full working order were almost scrapped by thieves. They knew what they were at, and the locos were left with axles cut up, etc etc, boilers wrecked, beyond restoration. And over there it seems that scrap thieves are even armed at times.

 

DCDR is currently improving its fencing and has CCTV installed - this work was already in progress. Perhaps the inability of thieves to get into the newly securer Downpatrick station and area persuaded these scumbags to go almost 2 miles out the south line looking for what's stored out there.

 

I remembere standing in the yard with the railway's Publicity Officer a few years ago and as we stood there, scumbags threw stones and broke the window of a Wickham car. We chased them. It is very lucky indeed for them that we did not catch them!

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Not the first cable theft...though it's been plaguing both preserved and Network Rail for a few years now across the water.

 

http://www.joe.ie/news-politics/current-affairs/cable-theft-shuts-down-dart-services-0011753-1

 

http://www.nationalist.ie/news/local/cabling-theft-disrupts-rail-services-1-2568685

 

From memory crossing gates were taken at a couple of locations and rails taken from Campile I think.

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how could they remove the cables -arent they electrofied all the time?

 

Maybe they knock the power off at night?

 

 

Nothing is safe - whole ski-lift nicked in Prague - http://www.skipad.co.uk/blog/stolen-ski-lift-just-latest-in-a-series-of-bizarre-metal-thefts/ and a ten-ton footbridge - http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-05-04/thieves-take-10-tonne-czech-bridge-in-metal-heist/3990384 ...

Edited by Broithe
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[Darts were forced out of service this morning by recession theft – someone stole lengths of the rail system’s overhead cable to sell for scrap metal.

 

 

how could they remove the cables -arent they electrofied all the time?

 

 

They robbed the overhead cable off the Howth Branch before the DART was first energised in the 1980s.

 

Though scrap thieves are not the brightest sparks if you know what you are doing its simple enough to isolate a section of overhead line.

 

Scrap lead and copper from redundant water pipes and cables used to be a useful source of beer money on building sites,

you had to be careful I remember one lad who dug up and tried to burn a live cable with shocking results.

 

John

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Though scrap thieves are not the brightest sparks if you know what you are doing its simple enough to isolate a section of overhead line.

 

Well worded, there. As an ex-Switchgear Design Engineer, I wrote a brief explanation of how to do it in my post above, but then decided to delete it before posting - you never know who's watching..

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Well worded, there. As an ex-Switchgear Design Engineer, I wrote a brief explanation of how to do it in my post above, but then decided to delete it before posting - you never know who's watching..

 

Good decision Jim:tumbsup:.

 

Rich,

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broithe, have heard that if you held a flouresent bulb close to a ht cable that it lights up..true of an old wifes tale? (not that i have any intention of doing it!!)
It will glow, dimly, due to the fact the ends of the tube are quite far apart and so they are at different potentials in the electrical field. It only really works where the phases are widely separated in space, such as the field of a high-voltage overhead transmission line. In a cable where live and neutral, or all three phases are present close together, there will be a lot of field cancellation which greatly reduces the effect. It would need to be a fairly high-voltage source, I doubt that it would work at 25kV, which most railway systems are - and, if it did, then you would probably have to be dangerously close for the effect to occur - with a high voltage field the gradient is sufficient at a much larger distance from the live conductor.

 

Standing under a transmission line and waving a long, pointed conductor at it is not something that should be recommended. I am not aware of anybody ever being zapped when doing this, but if it did happen then you would not get away with it..

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We were staying in Coventry and after 1 or 22 drinks the lads and myself decided to borrow a couple of flouresent tubes from the hotel and stand under the pylons in the field beside the hotel and yes it does work :D

 

Typical Saturday Night in Coventry

 

John

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Big problem on the Kingscourt branch apparently, the line is being walked around every three weeks to try discourage stealing the rail. I was told this was due to members of a "certain ethnic minority" offering miles of old rail track to scrapyards in the north. Also a problem in Limerick where two large spools of brand new copper wire was stole from the S&E the night after it was delivered and in Connolly where a guy in a white van was caught helping himself to a load of gear from the CTC compound.

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About 15 years ago despite 24 hour security we lost about £15k worth of electrical cable over Christmas on a construction site in North Dublin.

 

The thieves either had a hiab or used some of our lifting plant to load as some of the cable drums which were over a ton weight.

 

The security company got the boot over the inccident but their insurers paid up without a whimper.

 

John

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That's the thing.... three weekly inspections will be no deterrent to whatever scumbags - ethnic or not - want to steal stuff like this. Insurance will be claimed, shoulders shrugged, and life goes on. A few less valuable or irreplaceable artefacts, a few slightly better off scumbags with a few more shillings to spend on drink and drugs. Ho hum!

 

Sooner the scrap trade is regulated - and the harder it hits unethical ethnic scrap dealers - the better.

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