Seattle City Light knew of street light problem for awhile

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by LINDA BRILL / KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on January 7, 2011 at 8:01 PM

Updated Friday, Jan 7 at 8:19 PM

SEATTLE – Three more streetlights with potentially dangerous voltage were discovered Thursday night in Burien, on private property. That brings the total number of faulty streetlights to 28, since Seattle City Light began inspections after a dog was electrocuted on Queen Anne on Thanksgiving.

City Light says they've known about the potential streetlight problems for a long time. They say every utility has contact voltage issues.

In 2009, on Delridge Way SW, dog owner Neil Miller says he called City Light after his dog, Blackjack, was shocked as he approached a streetlight.

"He started stiffening up. I could hear the electricity in the air. He gave a whimper and I knew what was happening," said Miller.

The following day, a City Light crew repaired the street lamp. He says the crew told him it was a common thing. Miller says he's concerned that City Light waited for the dog death on Queen Anne before conducting inspections of all streetlights in its service area.

"I think it should have been a priority," said Miller.

So far, City Light has inspected 60 percent of the metal streetlight poles and ground cover plates. The highest voltage City Light has found so far is 111 volts from a streetlamp in West Seattle.

 

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