Reports of copper thefts continue to comprise area police blotters, as the national trend hits locally.
A Jan. 23 Bristol Borough Police blotter said that $5,000 worth of radiators and copper tubing were stolen from Swain Street in Bristol. The theft took place sometime between the last week of December 2012 and Jan. 21, 2013, the reports said.
Copper thefts, like the one mentioned, are becoming more widespread in the United States, according to the Coalition Against Copper Theft.
Since prices for copper have more than doubled in the past two years, the coalition says the theft of copper "has grown exponentially." The Department of Energy estimated that copper thefts are costing the U.S. about $1 billion per year.
In early December 2012, Bristol Borough Police also reported a copper theft from a PECO substation in the Levittown area. The estimated value of this theft was $6,000.
Middletown Township police have also had reports of stolen copper. Sometime between Dec. 20 and Jan. 3 a Levittown business had several thousand dollars worth of copper wiring and tubing stolen.
Security Magazine has suggestions to protect your home or business from potential copper theft. An article in the magazine suggests taking measures to conceal the presence of copper.
"A source of copper readily visible is more likely to be targeted than where copper is concealed or not readily identifiable," the article said. "Concealment of copper can consist of simply shrouding the equipment by covering it from casual observation. Relocate equipment that has copper inside to a less visible and more secure location."
Additionally, if copper is located in an area that cannot be moved, Security Magazine suggests painting the copper "to conceal the true nature and color of the material."
To read about other local incidents of copper theft, click here.