© 2022 Cincinnati Public Radio
Connecting You to a World of Ideas
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Storm sewer grate thefts costing Cincinnati

Ann Thompson
City of Cincinnati employee Chris Hines installs a lock on a replacement storm sewer grate.

City of Cincinnati employee Chris Hines bends over and installs a lock on one of nearly six dozen sewer grates that have been stolen this month.

This one is on Southside Ave. in Riverside.  City supervisor Rick St. John says Riverside and Sayler Park are where most have been stolen. A few have gone missing from South Fairmount and one from Camp Washington.

St. John says, "Unfortunately we can't afford to do a wholesale placement of locks, so a lot of times we put tar down... to make it difficult for somebody to pull the grates up."

St. John says stealing the grates is a lot of work for little profit. The cast iron grates weigh about 150 pounds and are broken up to sell for scrap. He asks people to report missing grates by calling 513-352-4900 and turn in grate thieves to police.

The thefts have cost Cincinnati about $10,000 this year. Tips from a local resident led police to the capture of one suspect on October 13.

With more than 30 years of journalism experience in the Greater Cincinnati market, Ann Thompson brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her reporting. She has reported for WKRC, WCKY, WHIO-TV, Metro Networks and CBS/ABC Radio. Her work has been recognized by the Associated Press and the Society of Professional Journalists. In 2019 and 2011 A-P named her “Best Reporter” for large market radio in Ohio. She has won awards from the Association of Women in Communications and the Alliance for Women in Media. Ann reports regularly on science and technology in Focus on Technology.