Saturday 24 August, 2019

Four arrested for illegal electricity connections in Greater Portmore

Four people were recently arrested for illegal power connections during anti-theft operations in the Greater Portmore area of St Catherine, as the Jamaica Public Service (JPS) aggressively continues its crackdown on electricity theft, a problem that has been plaguing the company for years, resulting in an estimated loss of US$2 million per month.

JPS said its teams conducted multiple audits in a number of communities in the area, resulting in the removal of a total of 36 illegal connections, which should yield approximately $2.7 million in savings.

Since the start of 2019, there have been 42 arrests for the illegal abstraction of electricity. Last year 89 arrests were made, the power company reported.

It said the implementation of new technology and intense work on the ground, also resulted in a 0.18 per cent reduction in electricity theft for 2018 – the biggest reduction in losses in six years. The highest rates of theft were recorded in the parishes of Clarendon, Kingston and St Catherine, while the lowest levels of theft were in Portland and Hanover.

JPS noted that more sophisticated methods being used to abstract electricity are appearing more often, many requiring the assistance of trained professionals in order to implement them.

However, the company said it is using multiple methods to unearth instances of electricity theft and is urging people who are not regularised to get in contact with them for more information on legalising their service, so that they can receive safe and reliable power supply.

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