Problems and Solution to prevent copper cable theft and manhole covers
The theft of manhole covers affects worldwide, causing severe damages such as:
- Car dagames.
- Exposed underground services which can be potentially tampered with.
- Legal claims and lawsuits for property damage and personal injuries being lodged against municipalities, utility companies, etc.
- Possible terrorist attacks that could accessed through sewers.
- copper cable theft, tlekom cable theft, electric panels, toxic substances…
The common issue of stealing manhole covers for scrap
This is one of the main reasons for the theft of manholes and copper cable theft, an act of vandalism usually motivated by the price of the scrap on the market.
China has been one of the most affected countries by this phenomenon, causing the stolen of more than 240.000 manhole covers in Beijing over a 10-year period. Chinese officials have taken an unusual step in the fight against scrap metal thieves by starting to fit their manholes with GPS tracking devices. Councils across the country are rushing to snap up the new high-tech manhole covers as they try to curb the theft of the old, low-tech versions.
In Colombia the stealing of manhole covers has turned also into a major issue. Government records details that around 200 manhole covers are stolen daily across the country.
The theft of manhole covers risks human lives
Some injuries from missing manhole covers or lose drain covers may be fairly minor such as cuts and traffic jams but some can be quite significant and cause you to change your day to day routine. Missing Manhole covers and missing drain covers in particular can come from pedestrians falling into them, cyclists hitting them with their bikes or even cars hitting them at speed and losing control of their vehicle causing injuries not only to themselves but pedestrians too.
Unfortunately, a non-secure manhole covers can turn into a tragedy, there are many examples around the world: on February of 2016 a flying manhole cover struck a car on the highway of Boston, resulting in a casualty of the driver. Moreover in May of2011 a 17-year-old girl died in the town of Santa Comba, in the province of Coruña, Spain, falling at a depth of two meters through a sewer without cover and covered with foam.
Most people have come up to the same solution: Change the raw material of the manhole cover. Because the market value of the metals, cast-iron and steel manhole covers and drainage grates are becoming the targets of thieves and vandals. Scrap metal is an $85 billion industry in the United States, according to the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries in Washington, D.C., and thieves follow the money. That is why these covers are being replaced for alternative materials such as ductile iron, plastic, fiber glass and polymer. Nevertheless, this sometimes is ineffective in terms of cost and time and doesn’t eradicate the problem of protecting what is inside of the manhole resulting in copper cable theft, telkom cable theft or wire theft.
Fundilock: Copper cable theft solution to protect any manhole cover designed by IVERNA
In Iverna we were aware of the problems that this issue can reach. That is why we have developed the new anti-theft system designed to secure any manhole cover and reduce the copper cable theft, thanks to its geometry and availability of diameters and qualities. This patented and innovative product is being installed in many places including USA and some European countries.
Fundilock has been designed in three models depending on the intensity of the traffic:
- Intense and heavy traffic: Solid Stainless steel AISI-304
- Moderate traffic: High impact polypropylene with AISI-304 stainless steel core.
- Sporadic traffic and sidewalks: High impact polypropylene with galvanized steel core.
Fundilock is designed to avoid the theft of cast iron equipment, manhole covers, drain covers, sewer cover, street furniture and many others.
Nuclear power plants such as ASCO, BANDELLOS, Almaraz Cáceres and Trillo in Madrid as well as several city councils rely on Fundilock to tackle the security problem that exists with the theft of caps and what they protect, such as wiring, optic fiber, etc.
We can also manufacture unique wrenches and screws for orders greater than 1000 units, in this way we make sure to have a unique system of wrench and screw, so that the designs are changed by countries and communities.
We currently manufacture Fundilock in 3 ranges for dry or tender bonding. The advantages of our solution are the following:
- Increase security against copper cable theft, telkom cable theft or wire theft.
- Minimizes the sound of the covers against the frame during the passage of vehicles.
- Prevents unauthorized access to the sewer, increasing security against possible terrorist attacks.
- Avoid accidents to people, animals or cars caused by stolen tops on the road.
- Protects street furniture such as lampposts, benches, etc.
- Protects electrical panels and counters.
- Protect boxes: telecommunications, electricity and sanitation.
- Protects manholes and wells.