Nearly three quarters of a million dollars has been shelled out by 6 oil and gas companies that operate in the Drayton Valley area over the past 6 months in order to pay for stolen items from lease sites and repairing the damages caused during the thefts.
The company that has suffered the largest hit is Penn West, having to cough up $515,000 in order to replace stolen goods and repair the damages caused. They had their largest thefts this year in mid-May, with several sites being hit, costing several hundred thousand dollars. Scott Beck, a security consultant for the energy company says the stolen items are expensive, but so are the repair costs. And it’s not only the costs that are high, the danger is too. Ground cables are being taken out of the ground, possibly resulting in an explosion and live wires are left sitting out in the open.
Sinopec Daylight Energy has been struck hard as well, experiencing 36 hits. For the first time in its history that company will start nightly security patrols of their leases in the area to try to combat the thefts.
Here’s the breakdown of financial loss for each company;
-Penn West Exploration, $515,000
-Sinopec Daylight Energy, $75,000
-Lightstream Resources, $75,000
-Conoco Phillips, $50,000
-Vermillion Energy, $25,000-30,000
-Baytex Energy, $5,800
Police say thieves are mainly fleeing with copper cable, solar panels, batteries and site glasses. Drayton Valley RCMP Corporal Bryan Notheisz admits it’s hard to catch the perpetrators because there is so much territory to cover, and simply not enough manpower.
If anyone has any information that could assist police in solving the crimes they are urged to call them at 780-542-4457 or call Crime Stoppers.