Washington State cuts-off “unauthorized” miners

Three “unauthorized” Bitcoin mining sites have been cut-off by a utility company in Washington State.

The sites had their electricity supply stopped by the provider who said they “posed a risk to public safety.”

According to The Chelan County Public Utility District (PUD) the three mines were “using enough power to create fire risks for neighbors and damage grid equipment not sized for the load.”

The mines were located separately in Wenatchee, Malaga, and Chelan, Washington State – a popular area for Bitcoin mining.

Utility officials disconnected the power at all three of those sites.

PUD Commissioner Steve McKenna stated that the minors were “putting people at risk,” saying:

“Not only are we concerned, we’re incensed that individuals are putting people at risk.

“We’re not going to tolerate it.

“This is a strong message, and I want to make that very clear.”

The PUD said rogue operators could face potential legal repercussions for public safety endangerment and power theft in the future.

The Washington State utilities company’s commissioner, Garry Arseneault, clarified that any heightened restrictions are targetting unknown mining operations.

Miners that are approved and followed the rules would not be targeted, however.

Arseneault said in a statement:

“What we’re discussing is a person who is purposely trying to slip around the end and use power in a way that a facility was not designed for and doing so in a manner where there’s been no request for service.

I see yet, once again, a reason to support the installation of automated meters to be able to confront these scoundrels before they do burn an apartment building down and perhaps kill a family or children in the process.”

Known for its abundant hydropower, Chelan County is an attractive site for industrial-scale miners.

Those who tap the region’s comparatively cheap power can maximize profits.

The PUD imposed a ban on new Bitcoin mining operations last month, citing safety concerns.

Other local governments in the region are reportedly making similar changes.

Wenatchee recently passed new cryptocurrency mining ordinances, for example.

The city joined Chelan City, East Wenatchee, and Leavenworth in restricting bitcoin miners, according to Koho 101.