Multi millions profitable Sibu Shipyards steal electricity
Three shipyards in Sibu found stealing electricity
Borneo Post May 8, 2012, Tuesday
TELL-TALE SIGN: The meter compartment’s security seal.
KUCHING: Three shipyards in Sibu were caught tampering with their electricity meters by Sarawak Electricity Supply Corporation (Sesco) last month.
“All the three shipyards which were found to have tampered their meters are located at Jalan Rantau Panjang in Sibu,” said Sesco in a statement issued here yesterday.
It added that the meters installed by Sesco at these shipyards were equipped with tamper-detection features. It has the capability to detect and record any meter irregularities.
The statement said that Sesco would continue to purchase more advanced meters in their fight against electricity theft through meter tampering.
According to Sesco, in order to meddle with the meter wiring to steal electricity, the thieves have to cut off the security seals of the meter or seals at the cable compartment of the main switch board.
Any signs of security seals being cut, damaged or modified can be easily identified by Sesco’s meter inspection team.
In one of the meter-tampering cases discovered, the meter was found to have no security seals.
And in a case in Miri, a hardware factory was caught for forcing open one phase of the measurement circuit to prevent electricity consumption being registered by the meter. The security seals of the meter were also found to be cut.
Power theft losses in Sibu are still the highest in the state although the percentage of losses has shown great improvement since 2011.
THE TACTIC: The opened phase of the measurement circuit.
“In monetary terms, we lost about RM50 million through power theft annually in Sibu. This is about 50 per cent of the total amount recorded in the state.”
Miri is second on the list with RM24 million.
Sesco said it would continue to mount public awareness campaigns to educate the public that stealing electricity is an offence and that it could cause property loss and electrocution.
Theft of electricity is an offence under Section 33(5) of the Electricity Ordinance and is punishable with a fine of up to RM100,000 or imprisonment of five years or both.
Members of the public can alert Sesco about electricity theft by calling 082-443535 or write to: The Controller, Revenue Management Control Centre, Wisma Sesco, Jalan Bako, Petrajaya, 93673 Kuching, Sarawak.