Seattle City Light Finds Three Streetlights In Burien Giving Off Voltage


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On Thursday (Jan. 6), Seattle City Light announced that it had identified four more streetlights that were giving off dangerous voltage, three of which are located in the Shorewood neighborhood of Burien.

City Light contractors have been doing inspections around the Puget Sound area since a dog was killed when it stepped on an energized groundcover plate in Queen Anne in November.

The latest discoveries bring the total number of streetlights found with contact voltage to 25.

Crews immediately cut off power and started repairs. There were no injuries.

The three local hotspots are:

  • 12841 Shorewood Dr SW, Burien, 31 volts, deteriorated wiring was found, power was cut off, repairs pending
  • 12854 Shorewood Dr SW, Burien, 31 volts, deteriorated wiring was repaired
  • 12882 Shorecrest Dr SW, Burien, 50 volts, a faulty lamp fixture was discovered, power was cut off, repairs pending

Here’s a map showing the Burien hotspots:

View City Light Streetlights with Voltage in a larger map
The inspections are part of City Light’s ongoing safety testing and repair efforts on all its 30,000 metal streetlight poles and nearby metal facilities.

After a dog was killed when it stepped on an electrified groundcover plate in Queen Anne, City Light initiated testing of all of its metal streetlight poles and related metal equipment.

Two contractors – Davey Resources Group and Power Survey Co. – are conducting the testing.

The contractors have tested about 12,500 pieces of equipment or about 42 percent of the total. Areas where testing has been completed include Seattle Center, Downtown, SODO, Capitol Hill, First Hill, West Seattle, Madrona and Tukwila.

The industry average for contact voltage potential with a metal streetlight pole is 0.3 percent. City Light’s findings are 0.2 percent.

Blair Sorrel, Founder of StreetZaps.com, said:

“Contact voltage is a chronic hidden hazard that can readily victimize an unsuspecting dog, walker, or both. No dog lover could possibly observe a more horrifying scene than witnessing his beloved pet instantaneously maimed or tragically electrocuted. When you exercise your pooch, please exercise greater prudence. Common outdoor electrical and metal fixtures may shock or even kill your vulnerable dog. And depending upon the current, the walker will be bitten and like poor Aric Roman, suffer permanently. But you can, indeed, self-protect.

Just start to adopt this simple strategy — EYEBALL THE BLOCK, AND AVOID A SHOCK. Take a few seconds and make your trajectory toward generally safer, free standing, non-conductive surfaces, ie., plastic, wood, cardboard. Intuit your dog’s cues and if it’s resistant, change directions. Work site perimeters may be live so try to elude them. If necessary, switch sides of the street or your hands when leading to skirt hazards. If you traverse the same route, you may memorize locations of potential dangers. Carry your pooch when in doubt. Consider indoor restroom products like PottyPark when external conditions are chancy or RopeNGo’s hardware-free leash and harness. And don’t rely on dog booties as a palliative as they will actually put your pet at even greater risk since the dog can’t tell you they’re leaking! To learn to more, please see StreetZaps. A safer walk is yours year round if you are willing to open to your eyes and mind to it.”

Some of the other locations where the latest contact voltage was discovered include:

WHITE CENTER:

  • 1721 SW Roxbury Street, 111 volts, a faulty ballast assembly was replaced.

WEST SEATTLE/ARBOR HEIGHTS:

  • SW Avalon Way and 35th Avenue SW, 104 volts, bad wiring was repaired.
  • SW Holly Street and 31st Avenue SW, 107 volts, a faulty lamp head was replaced.
  • 4115 SW Arroyo Drive, 84 volts, a faulty ballast assembly was replaced.
  • SW Arroyo Drive and 39th Avenue SW, 98 volts, power was disconnected, repairs pending.
  • Near 56th Avenue SW and SW Bradford Street with 103 volts. A crew repaired a connector that was touching the pole and energizing it.
  • Near Fauntleroy Way SW and SW Edmunds Street with 97 volts. Power was cut off and crews are determining the cause to begin work on a repair.
  • A streetlight cover near Marine View Drive SW and 42nd Avenue SW with 84 volts. Power was cut off and crews are determining the cause to begin work on a repair.

SEATTLE:

  • 4427 Airport Way S, 32 volts, a faulty lamp fixture was replaced.
  • E James and 32nd Avenue, 98 volts, bad wiring was replaced.
  • E Spruce and 32nd Avenue, 35 volts, a bad connection was found and all connections were replaced.
  • E Yesler Way and 28th Avenue, 41 volts, a bad wiring connection was found, power was disconnected, repairs pending.
  • 12th Avenue S and S Jackson Street, 100 volts, frayed wiring was repaired.
  • A streetlight pole near 12th Avenue S and S Jackson Street with 100 volts. A crew found frayed wiring that was energizing the pole’s ground wire. Temporary repairs were made to ensure safe operations until a permanent fix can be scheduled.

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Comments

2 Responses to “Seattle City Light Finds Three Streetlights In Burien Giving Off Voltage”
  1. Stephen Lamphear says:

    Free voltage in the high rent district of Burien?! Awesome!

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  2. CoverOfLight says:

    It seems more likely that City Light found the dangerous fixtures over there because they’re checking the wealthy neighborhoods first.

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