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27 August 2011, 08:17
16 homes in Wisbech remain without power, three days after thieves caused an explosion by trying to steal high voltage equipment.
UK Power Networks says the power supply was interrupted on Friday [26 August] evening at around 5:30pm following an attempted theft of equipment from the sub-station on Railway Road.
Around 30 firefighters were called to the area when residents reported smoke and loud bangs coming from electrical equipment in their homes.
This was as a result of a power surge, caused by the explosion at the sub-station.
Firefighters made the area safe, and engineers from UK Power Networks soon arrived on sight to to begin restoring power to homes in the area.
At first, around 1,700 homes were left without power.
Power was restored to 1,620 homes within two hours of the attempted theft.
Since then, engineers have been working to restore power to the remainder of homes, that get electricity from the underground cables coming from the substation affected.
However, before electricity can be turned back on to each house, engineers need to check the internal wiring of properties to ensure it has not been damaged and remains safe.
It is believed that the only homes that remain without power now are those that engineers have not been able to gain access to and check, possibly due to residents being away for the long bank holiday weekend.
Meanwhile, a police investigation into the break-in and attempted theft at the substation has started.
A spokesperson from UK Power Network said: "UK Power Networks engineers and specialist contractors worked throughout yesterday (August 28) to check over properties left without power following Friday’s theft and damage at a substation in Wisbech.
Some supplies have been restored.
However, further work will be carried out today (August 29) to ensure power can be restored as quickly and as safely as possible to the 16 remaining properties.
If property owners still have not contacted us, we urge them to do so on our helpline 0800 783 8838."