CAROLINE COUNTY, Va. (WTVR) – Officials said Wednesday that stolen signs in Caroline County have cost taxpayers around $1,500 over the past two years.
Caroline County Sheriff Tony Lippa said the thefts are not just costly, but are a public safety issue.
"The signs go missing and someone gets to a rural area and gets lost," said Lippa. "They have no cell phone coverage or call us and can't tell us where they are."
Additionally, Lippa said the 28 signs stolen over the years are essential for first responders. Without them, the sheriff said it makes crews' jobs much more difficult.
After all, missing a street sign could mean the difference between life and death.
"Some people may not think it's a big deal, but it's a public safety issue and it can cost someone their life."
Once a sign is stolen, the county has 72 hours to get a replacement one installed, which can cost $50-75.
"Spending that money is a waste when it can be used for other lifesaving stuff or maybe another deputy," said Lippa.
If you have information about the sign thefts, the Caroline County Sheriff's Office at 804-633-1133