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Calif. fire depts. suffer $50,000 of hydrant damage in last month

The southern Calif. departments are urging the public to help them report these crimes

By FireRescue1 Staff

IMPERIAL VALLEY, Calif. — Some southern Calif. fire departments are asking for the public's help in reporting hydrant-related crimes after a rash of vandalism and stealing.

In the last month, at least two dozen fire hydrants have been shut off and have had parts stolen from it, racking up a $50,000 bill in damages, according to Imperial Valley Press.

Officials say that demand for scrap metal may be the motive behind the thefts. Those who have been stealing first shut off portions of the city's water supply, dismantle the hydrants and then take the scrap metal and resell it.

The danger of these types of offenses, authorities say, is that hydrants are rendered unusable and will not be available for firefighters to use in emergencies.

Those convicted of the crimes may face felony conviction and a prison term of three years.

The comments below are member-generated and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of or its staff. If you cannot see comments, try disabling privacy and ad blocking plugins in your browser. All comments must comply with our Member Commenting Policy.
Russ Gregston Russ Gregston Wednesday, January 09, 2013 7:18:15 AM Good Ole Calif. I remember when it was manhole covers but this is a whole new level of stupid.
Bill Hoeft Bill Hoeft Wednesday, January 09, 2013 6:18:36 PM Real justice: The thief's house catches fire and the nearest hydrant is inoperable.
Tom Fox Tom Fox Saturday, January 12, 2013 7:13:49 PM They should make it a crime to accept any and all parts related to a fire hydrant at any junk yard or scrap yard and make it a stiff jail time. Prosecute just one person accepting the parts or hydrants and watch how fast the problem stops...

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