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Copper pipe theft shuts down Coggan pool

Three backflow preventor pipes providing cold water were stolen from outside the Coggan Family Aquatic Complex at La Jolla High School sometime during the evening on Thursday causing the pool to be closed Friday morning.

“They’re (pipes) made out of copper and brass and they were probably taken to make money recycling copper,” said Randy Franke, aquatics director at Coggan Family Aquatic Complex at 800 Nautilus St.

“We had no water for the showers or restrooms. I need bathroom facilities before I can reopen. Hopefully, we won’t be down more than six or eight hours today.”

Franke said it was his intent to bring in port-a-potties until the pipes could be replaced. , hHe estimated their worth about $1.500 a piece, “You probably only get about $200 worth of copper out of them,” he added.

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Asked if there was anything that could be done to protect against such thefts in the future, Franke said, “You can put cages over the top of them, but that just means you have to use your bolt cutters before you can steal them. It would make it a little harder.”

Franke added the high school’s backflow preventors, should the city lose pressure in its water lines, keep water from the high school from flowing backward into the city’s pipes.

He said copper pipes have been stolen from the school before, but this is the first time they have been taken from the Coggan pool area.