Railway Cable Thief In Cape Town Electrocuted, Burnt Beyond Recognition Carl Fomby Published in Oct 2020 / Updated in Aug 2021 Electric shock charred a cable thief beyond recognition as he tried to tamper with railway power lines. Metrorail spokesperson Riana Scott confirmed the incident, which occurred at the Langa railway station, Cape Town, South Africa. Meanwhile, police spokesperson Andrè Traut said they were investigating the incident. United Commuters Voice (UCV) also commented on the incident, saying: “[It’s] sad there seems to be no end to this vandalism.“And worse still is that the people paid to protect the infrastructure are the ones either engaged or giving information. Or turning a blind eye, all for a monetary reward.” railway cable thief in cape town electrocuted, burnt beyond recognition This incident comes days after city officials announced they were working with authorities to combat the increasing copper cable theft. According to the officials, they have had to find alternative solutions ‘because repairs have become costly and dangerous.’ The city spokesperson Riana Geldenhuys also said that they are experiencing a rapid increase in cable theft in other regions. Riana said: “It is a crime affecting everyone. It has an impact on the delivery of crucial services, including provision of electricity, public transport, telephone and internet services.” She also explained that power outages due to cable theft could increase crime as properties are more vulnerable. Riana added that repairing vandalisms has diverted resources that could have been better used elsewhere. She said: “In 2019, in Van der Stel Street, Paarl, thieves stole the new copper cables less than a week after official replaced them.”“They also robbed Drakenstein Municipality’s technicians in broad daylight while they were repairing the damaged infrastructure.” According to Riana, to lower cable theft cases, the city should replace all copper cables with aluminum cables. Cable Theft Incident Isn’t the First of its Kind Just recently, a man died after electrocution while trying to steal copper cables from a construction site in Duarte, Los Angeles. Construction workers found the man’s body entangled in electrical equipment when they showed up at the site. In Germany also, a 10,000-volt electric shock charred a thief beyond recognition while he tried to steal a live copper cable. Additionally, in Oklahoma, police recently found a body of a man who tried to steal copper wire from a light pole. According to officials, the man came into contact with a circuit of ‘about 480 volts, which is a lot.’ This led to his electrocution.