Traffic light battery bandits

Motorists just over the border are being urged to be on the lookout for thieves stealing batteries from inside traffic lights.

The Gold Coast Bulletin has reported Tweed Shire Council has lost five batteries in recent weeks equating to around $10,000, after thieves used angle grinders to steal the valuable batteries from temporary lights and signs at roadwork sites.

Council Acting Senior Engineer of Construction Bob Hanby said the community had every right to be “concerned and outraged.”

“This is not a victimless crime,” Mr Hanby said.

“What could have happened…had two vehicles met head-to-head on that section of road is frightening.”

RACQ’s Principal Road Safety Advisor Joel Tucker said malfunctioning temporary lights could be dangerous.

“People need to realise that temporary traffic signs and lights are there to keep you safe at roadwork sites where there may be significant changes taking places,” Mr Tucker said.

“This case is of particular concern because if traffic is not managed correctly then there’s a real chance of serious collisions.

“We urge road users to report anything they deem suspicious to their local council or police so we can help keep our roads safe.”

This was not the first time roadwork equipment has been the target for thieves, with a number of deep cycle batteries stolen along the Pacific Highway last year.