In my area
Use the Aberdeen City Council Interactive Mapping service to explore your local area
Rain water channel thieves put public at risk
Thieves are leaving the rain water channels deep gutters which run across pavements from property boundaries to the road exposed and creating significant trip hazards for pedestrians, as well as wheelchair, and pushchair users.
These gutters are usually covered by strips of cast iron, but over the past few days and nights they have been disappearing from pavements, particularly in the Mile End, Stockethill and Richmondhill areas of the city.
Aberdeen City Council's Enterprise, Planning and Infrastructure director Gordon McIntosh said: "The removal of the rain water channel covers is totally irresponsible and exposes people, particularly some of the more vulnerable members of society, to a very real risk of accident and injury.
"Whoever is responsible is not only putting people at risk, but also causing the property owners and the public purse unnecessary work and expense."
Rain water channels carry water from downpipes attached to buildings from the property, through the footpath, and discharge onto the public road. The responsibility for maintaining them in a safe and working condition rests with the property owners.
Aberdeen City Council's roads team has been making the owners aware of the issue and either covering the channels or temporarily filling them in to make the pavements safe. Members of the public are urged to be alert and to report any suspicious activity to the police by calling 101. Anyone who comes across an exposed rain water channel can report it to Aberdeen City Council by calling 08456 080919. The council will inform the property owner and make it safe until a proper repair can be effected.
A Police Scotland spokeswoman said: "We have received reports about these incidents and inquiries are ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to contact Police Scotland by calling 101."
Property owners whose rain water channel covers have been removed are advised to report the theft to Police Scotland and to ask for an incident number, which can be used when making a claim to their insurers.
Scrap metal dealers are asked to be alert to the situation and to inform the police if approached by anyone seeking to sell this type of item.