Thieves have removed all the circuit breakers from street lights on the Mandela Highway causing darkness on a four-kilometre stretch of the busy thoroughfare.
The National Works Agency (NWA) says that it was discovered at the weekend that all the circuit breakers have been stolen. The latest theft follows the stealing, a month ago of some of the breakers, leaving a section of the roadway in darkness.
Manager of Communication and Customer Services at the NWA, Stephen Shaw, says the circuit breakers are critical components that assist in minimizing damage to the new lamps in the event of power surges.
A month ago, following reports that a number of the lamps were not working, checks revealed that some of the breakers had been stolen.
Mr. Shaw says even though the Jamaica Public Service (JPS) had restored some of the lamps, reports of non-functioning lights persisted. “During a visit by the JPS to the site on the weekend, it was discovered that all the circuit breakers have been removed from the panel box,” said a statement from the NWA Monday, November 19.
The NWA is asking motorists to be careful when using the roadway at night.
Mr. Shaw stated that thieves have been preying on the system since the street lamps were first installed. In the past, wires that are crucial to the functioning of the lights were cut and pulled from beneath the road, rendering the system inoperable. Temporary street lamps have also been stolen along the Mandela Highway.
The Jamaica Public Service is now working to put the street lamps back in operation in the shortest possible time.