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Massive explosion and fire at ESB substation caused by copper wire thieves

Around 120,000 ESB customers in west Dublin were left without power after the blaze.

THE MASSIVE FIRE at an ESB substation in Dublin that left thousands of homes without power on Sunday night was caused by thieves attempting to steal copper wire, the electricity company has said.

Around 120,000 customers had their supply cut off after a blaze broke out at a transformer in the substation on Kylemore Way, in the Inchicore area of west Dublin.

Emergency services were called to the scene just before 7.30pm and ESB crews restored full power to the area after about 50 minutes.

The company said in a statement that an investigation has found the fire was caused by “third-party interference” at the site. The overall cost of the incident to the utility is estimated at up to €10 million, a spokesperson said.

The spokesperson added that over 150 kilometres of copper valued at €3 million has been stolen from the ESB since 2012, costing around €28 million to replace.

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ESB said any interference with electricity infrastructure is “a highly dangerous activity” that can put lives at risk.

It called on members of the public to be vigilant and report suspicious activity to gardaí.

Read: All power restored to residents following blaze at ESB substation

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Catherine Healy

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