‘There’s no street lights and it’s very dark’: Neighbors concerned about street light outages

Local

Left in the dark. Some areas of Wichita look more like black holes than bustling neighborhoods. It’s causing some concern.

Westar Energy’s Communications Manager says they are working on the backlog of street light repairs. But residents on West 13th Street North say they’re afraid of the dark for more reasons than one.

It’s a city street turned rural.

“It’s like being on an old dirt road somewhere that there’s no street lights and it’s very, very dark,” said Donald Letellier, Wichita.

“If somebody was riding a bike you probably wouldn’t be able to see them,” said Toby Henderson, Wichita.

Toby Henderson says the street light outside his house on 13th Street North has been out for about two weeks. And when it’s on, it helps light the road.

“It made a very big difference,” said Henderson.

It’s why he and dozens of other neighbors I talked to, want the lights back on. They say it’s not just for them, but for others passing through.

“There’s a reason the street lights are there, and I think it’s important for traffic and people who walk alongside the sidewalks,” said Letellier.

Westar Energy’s Communications Manager says the weather has something to do with the black out.

“Lately, we’ve seen some misty and kind of foggy weather and sometimes what that will do with street lights and electrical equipment is it will cause fuses to blow, and so we’ve seen an increase in the number of outages,” said Gina Penzig, Westar Energy.

Most street lights are maintained by Westar and some by the city. But residents say they don’t care who maintains them as long as they’re back on.

“Like to see the lights back on that’s for sure,” said Henderson.

Turn around time depends on how many reports they have and nature of the reports. You can report a street light outage online by clicking here.

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