Illegal connections destroy 34 streetlights in Maxfield Avenue

September 07, 2016

Exactly one month after the collaborative move between Jamaica Public Service (JPS), the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) and the residents of Maxfield Avenue to keep streetlights free of illegal connections, 34 streetlights in the area have stopped working due to multiple instances of electricity theft.

According to JPS, "the streetlights are not designed to provide domestic power supply to homes for their electrical appliances – such as refrigerators and televisions. They are, therefore, being destroyed due to the strain of persistent overloading."

The utility company says it has been forced to carry out millions in repair work as a result of the damages.

"JPS has carried out repairs on 85 streetlights at a cost of US$17,000 or J$2.16 million – and already 34 no longer work, due to breaches.  Additionally, the company pays US$5,000 (J$638,405) to replace each burnt transformer.  Three transformers have been destroyed in the last five weeks alone due to power theft," JPS said in a press release sent to STAR Online today.

On August 5, 2016, JPS and members of the JCF met with residents of the Maxfield community and local leadership to hammer out the way forward, given the continued breaches of the streetlights and the resultant malfunctioning of these structures. At the meeting, residents committed to stop connecting illegally to the streetlights as their actions are putting their community at risk. They also committed to holding each other accountable, so as to clamp down on the practise.

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