Nottingham

Newark substation 'shooting' cut power to 8,000 properties

Electricity pylons Image copyright PA
Image caption Homes and businesses in Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire and Lincolnshire suffered power cuts when a substation was shot at three times in one week

A substation was shot at three times causing damage which left thousands of properties without power, an energy firm has said.

Western Power Distribution (WPD) said the substation, near Newark, in Nottinghamshire, was damaged on 18, 23 and 24 May.

About 8,000 homes and businesses in Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire and Lincolnshire suffered power cuts.

Nottinghamshire Police believes an air rifle was used.

The electricity company used a helicopter to patrol the area after the first power cut.

It was able to "pinpoint a damaged component which was consistent with having been caused by a firearm," the firm said.

Two further similar incidents were reported to police.

'Mindless and dangerous'

Eirian Llewellyn, from WPD, said: "Power lines carry extremely high voltages and interfering with them in any way is potentially lethal.

"It can put at risk the lives of our engineers who have to repair and replace them if they have been left in an unsafe condition."

Properties in Bingham, Sibthorpe and Newark in Nottinghamshire; Bottesford, in Leicestershire; and Caythorpe, in Lincolnshire, experienced power cuts of up to an hour each time.

A police spokeswoman said: "At this stage it appears the substation was struck by a projectile, most likely fired from an air rifle.

"Damaging an electricity substation is a mindless and dangerous act which also has the potential to impact on the electricity supply to many houses in the nearby area."

Anyone with any information is asked to contact the force.

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