Northside Houston work crews frustrated after equipment repeatedly stolen in broad daylight

Courtney Carpenter Image
Friday, June 23, 2023
N. Houston work crews dealing with stolen equipment in broad daylight
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Construction crews in north Houston are sharing their frustrations with ABC13 over their expensive work equipment being stolen in broad daylight.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Albert Flores doesn't shy away from helping others. He's brought to ABC13's attention problems with a sinkhole and someone who went without running water for years. He is someone who tries to help, but now he's the one in a bind.

"It was a drive-by theft - that fast during the daytime," Flores explained.

Albert works as a lead locate technician. He's responsible for marking what utility lines are underground while big construction projects are going on.

As he was working Thursday on Everett Street near Paschall Street, he says an expensive piece of work equipment, a transmitter, was stolen from him.

"It takes a toll on me because, as a worker, this is my bread and butter. This is how I make my money," Flores said.

At first, Flores was concerned he would go without pay since he didn't have his necessary equipment anymore. However, the company he works for, Stake Center Locating, put him back on the clock Friday to do any projects he could without the transmitter.

He says this is not the first time this has happened while working in this near northside neighborhood. About six months ago, he says he dealt with the same thing.

"Unfortunately, we had so much equipment taken from us we didn't have a replacement to give to me right off the bat," Flores explained.

Another crew working in the same area tells ABC13 they, too, have recently had equipment stolen in broad daylight.

According to ABC13's Neighborhood Safety Tracker, there have been 573 thefts reported in this area in the last 12 months, up from the four-year average of 506.

These crews tell us they are doing their best to watch their backs now and lock up all the time, all while working away in this heat.

"I work outside all day long, and I don't have the security of closing the door or locking the door. We have to deal with the elements. Now we have to deal with situations like this," Flores said.

ABC13 did reach out to Stake Center Locating to see if this is a problem they are dealing with nationwide, but so far, has not heard back.

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