Businesses suffer

2018-01-15 13:45
The substation at the corner of Victoria Road and West Street, where unsecured cables are regularly stolen.

The substation at the corner of Victoria Road and West Street, where unsecured cables are regularly stolen. (Supplied)

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Cable theft at a city substation is having a devastating impact on neighbouring businesses.

Kendall and Strachan Printhouse on Victoria Road said on Friday it had been hit by power outages for the third time in five weeks.

Owner Michael Coldbeck said this was because of cable theft at the substation on the corner of Victoria Road and West Street.

The substation’s doors are broken and it has no locking mechanisms in place.

“The cables have been stolen three times in five weeks and we are incurring financial loss,” said Coldbeck.

“It appears that the municipality is not doing its job. Our business has been in Maritzburg for 70 years. As a business that has paid its rates religiously, we deserve better,” said Coldbeck.

On Friday he had to send his staff home because they had no power.

“I received an SMS on Thursday night from my burglar alarm company telling me we had no power. On Friday we were down for the entire business day.”

Coldbeck said he had lost money because of the power outgates.

“I have overhead expenses in the business that don’t go away just because the lights are off.

“The insurance, rent, water and staff need to be paid. I’m having to pay staff overtime to make up for the lost hours,” he said.

Msunduzi Municipality acting spokesperson Siyabonga Hlongwa said a plan to secure substations and hire extra security guards was currently being rolled out.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  cable theft

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