Power-pole damage ‘could have killed’

Surrey RCMP is working with BC Hydro to investigate after two South Surrey power poles were cut down by chainsaw.

One of two power poles that were chainsawed down in South Surrey Sunday. Police are investigating.

One of two power poles that were chainsawed down in South Surrey Sunday. Police are investigating.

Surrey RCMP is investigating after two power poles were cut down in South Surrey Sunday in what BC Hydro officials are describing as incidents that could have caused death or serious injury.

Perpetrators used chainsaws to down the poles so they could then strip the transformers of their copper, according to BC Hydro.

The poles were located on separate properties near 16 Avenue and 168 Street. The electrical equipment attached to one power pole was de-energized, however, equipment attached to the second pole was not.

“The power line had 25,000 volts of electricity running through it when it was brought down, causing a grass fire,” a news release issued Tuesday afternoon states. “This could have injured or killed a member of the public or BC Hydro employees.”

In addition to the police investigation, the incidents prompted BC Hydro to ask the public to report any suspicious activity spotted around power infrastructure.

They’re also reminding citizens to never assume electrical equipment is de-energized.

“A downed power line is dangerous and should be treated as an emergency,” the release states. “Stay back at least 10 metres – the length of a standard bus – and dial 911 immediately.”

Cpl. Scotty Schumann said police have no suspects or witnesses to the two latest incidents. Anyone with information that could help identify those responsible is asked to call RCMP at 604-599-0502.