McCarty Bros. Inc. of Romeoville, Ill. got a call one day that the A/C unit at a shoe store was leaking water. It seems that the mall maintenance man arrived at 6 a.m. to discover a heavy smell of natural gas, and he shut off the gas meter at the back of the store. Pictured at top right is what was on the roof.

Burglars had rolled over the 5-ton unit to gain access to the store. They wisely shut off the gas valve before turning over the unit. Then they broke the gas line before the valve. Potentially explosive gas was pouring on to the roof.

(Photos courtesy of Walt McCarty, McCarty Bros. Inc., Romeoville, Ill.)
The burglars went into the building and proceeded to rob the place. They forgot to turn off the electrical disconnect. When the folks from McCarty Bros. arrived, the spark igniter was happily clicking away - luckily, the wind was blowing away from the unit.

Publication date: 10/31/2005