Burned-out bulbs fire up councillor

Council will ask B.C. Hydro to replace 28 burned-out street lights on the utility’s poles.

The City of Vernon wants a government corporation to live up to its responsibility.

Council will ask B.C. Hydro to replace 28 burned-out street lights on the utility’s poles.

“The Downtown Vernon Association is choked over this and there have become some dark areas,” said Coun. Brian Quiring, adding that a lack of lights is creating safety concerns in alleys.

“We need a letter to go to them saying, ‘Get it in gear.’ We need to get the priorities changed.”

Quiring says it’s not up to the city to replace the bulbs.

“We don’t have any control over them. We need to put some pressure on Hydro.”

Quiring doesn’t rule complaining to MLA Eric Foster about the government agency.

“If we don’t get a satisfactory response (from Hydro), we may have to come up with a plan to talk to someone higher up.”

B.C. Hydro officials defend their process.

“Repairing or replacing those street lights requires B.C. Hydro crews or B.C. Hydro contractors to do the work. Recently, in the Vernon area, crews have been so busy responding to power outages, such as those caused by the recent snow storm, that they have not had a chance to get to those street lights,” said Dag Sharman, community relations manager.

“The burned out street lights will absolutely be replaced as crews are available.”

Sharman added that B.C. Hydro has a process for municipalities to provide information about burned out street lights.

“It is a web-based tool for managing repairs to street lights that are maintained by B.C. Hydro.”