CenturyLink crews will be working overnight to restore phone and Internet service to customers in midtown Omaha, a company spokesman said late Friday.

Copper thieves broke into telephone utility boxes and chopped the wires, said Karl Bieber, the spokesman.

The boxes are near 50th and Izard Streets and 46th and Nicholas Streets.

Customers began reporting outages about 5 p.m. Bieber said at least 100 businesses and households have been affected.

He said about 25 utility boxes in Omaha and Council Bluffs have been damaged by copper thieves since mid-November.

Bieber said the irony is "there's not that much copper" in the wiring.

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