Stolen copper cable could create health risk

Twinwoods Business Park
Image: Google, Streetview (Nov 2009)

Bedfordshire Police have warned that copper cable, recently stolen in a burglary from Twinwoods Business Park, could create a health risk as it’s coated in Asbestos.

Thieves used an angle grinder to cut through a number of sections of copper cable at an unoccupied business unit, breaking its protective coating which is made of asbestos and could now create a health hazard to anyone handling it.

Dave Heaslip from the Crime Bureau, investigating, said “We are concerned that anyone handling this cable may not be aware of the asbestos coating. This coating is severely hazardous and those handling it risk considerably damaging their own health, and the health of others.”

When materials that contain Asbestos are disturbed or damaged, fibres are released into the air. When these fibres are inhaled they can cause serious diseases. These diseases often take a long time to develop, but once diagnosed, it is often too late to do anything.

  • Asbestos still kills around 5000 workers each year, this is more than the number of people killed on the road.
  • Around 20 tradesman die each week as a result of past exposure
  • Asbestos can be present in any building built or refurbished before the year 2000.

Anyone with information on where the cable may be or who may spot a quantity of cable dumped, is asked not to touch it. Instead contact Bedfordshire Police on 101, quoting ref 40/45396/18.

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