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Otter Tail Power Company personnel worked on repairs Thursday after thieves broke into a substation in north Wahpeton, N.D., to steal copper wire. Submitted photo

$50 copper wire theft causes $30,000 in damage

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Near midnight on September 4, emergency responders and Otter Tail Power Company personnel reacted to information from a caller who noticed arcing in an electrical substation in north Wahpeton, North Dakota. According to Otter Tail Power Company’s safety services manager Eric Hamm, responders discovered that a trespasser, or trespassers, had cut the substation fence and had begun to cut ground wires from electrical equipment before hitting a live wire that caused an arc flash.

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