AUSTIN, Tex.: Energy Crime Stoppers announced today it has expanded to serve the state of Ohio.
The program was launched in 2008 by the Houston, Tex.-based Energy Security Council and also operates in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Arkansas, Colorado, Louisiana, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming. The Council says Energy Crime Stoppers works with local police and simply provides another avenue to reduce and solve crime against energy products and energy companies.
“The more information we receive, the more crime we will fight,” says Larry Wieda, executive director, Northern Colorado Crime Stoppers and former member of the New York City Police Department.
The Energy Security Council says the expansion of the energy sector into extracting oil from shale is the driver behind the formation of Energy Crime Stoppers.
“Crime follows growth,” Wieda explains. “Having a relationship with energy companies and education the general populous about Energy Crime Stoppers is a tremendous asset for the community.”
Also, oil companies are increasingly focused on domestic product and have expanded their US operations.
“Many energy companies we’ve partnered with are now working in other parts of the country,” says Susan Rogers, administrator of Energy Crime Stoppers and exectuive director of Crime Stoppers in Odessa, Tex. “We know what is coming so we are able to assist them in protecting assets.”
Citizens and can call 1-888-OIL-TIPS, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to offer information. Energy Crime Stoppers is also equipped to receive tips via text or instant messaging and says it is also effective to announce Energy Crime Stoppers’ presence through displaying billboards, bumper stickers, signs and sporting hard hat decals.
“Areas where Energy Crime Stoppers is embedded sees a major deterrent in energy crimes,” says Tony Lapaglia, Apache Energy’s senior security manager for the U.S. region. “The investment is well worth it.”
Energy Crime Stoppers does not operate in Canada. Petro-Canada, a division of Suncor International Inc. does however, have a partnership with Crime Stoppers to help prevent and solve crimes at its retail gas stations across the country.