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EXCLUSIVE: 1,200 STREET LIGHTS FIXED ACROSS THE ISLE OF WIGHT – BUT WERE THEY DANGEROUS?

Contractors repairing a street light on Fairlee Road, Newport

Over a thousand street lights across the Isle of Wight have recently been repaired to improve the durability of a bracket – but Island Roads have dodged questions as to whether the lights were at any point deemed dangerous and posed a risk to public safety, Island Echo can exclusively reveal.

Under the PFI contract, every street light on the Isle of Wight has been replaced in recent years. Islanders have waved goodbye to the orange glow so familiar on the UK’s streets and have said hello to modern LED lighting, which produces white light.

It has been confirmed to Island Echo that around 10% of these new street lights were recently deemed as having a bracket fitted that was potentially liable to wear, pressure or damage. The bracket was used during the installation process and affected a total of 1,200 lights, which have since been inspected and repaired.

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However, Island Roads have failed to answer a simple question put forward to them by Island Echo almost 10 weeks ago are the street lights dangerous/unsafe in their current [pre-repair] state?. A number of questions were put forward to the PFI contractor on 20th June – whilst the work was taking place – and all were answered on 1st July – apart from one. Now, 8 weeks later and our patience have worn out…

Up until now, the bracket replacement work – carried out by a contractor on behalf of the lights’ manufacturer – has been kept rather quiet. There have been no tweets, press releases, traffic notices or any kind of advisory of the works taking place locally or nationally. A lot of the replacement work took place under the cover of darkness.

A mix of Philips Luma and Philips Stela street lights are used on the Island, with Mini Luma lanterns used in areas of outstanding natural beauty. Highways England issued a safety alert about Philips Luma street lights falling to the ground in February 2018.

It is unknown when the Island’s street lights were deemed as needing repair work and whether there was a risk to public safety between that time and the time they were repaired in June/July 2019.

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A spokesperson for Island Roads told Island Echo on 1st July:

“The manufacturers of the streetlights installed by Island Roads are undertaking a nationwide upgrade of the brackets used in one model on the network (Philips Luma).

“The work, which will improve the durability of the lights, is being done at the manufacturers’ cost.

“On the Island, around 1,200 brackets are being replaced and this work programme is now nearing completion”.

The news comes just 3 months after Island Roads was awarded a ‘Good Lighting’ award by the Isle of Wight branch of Campaign to Protect Rural England.

Island Echo was told on 29th July that Island Roads had prepared a statement and a statement had been received from the street light manufacturers, but clearance from the Isle of Wight Council was pending. It remains pending at the time of publication – 27th August.

READ MORE: On 22nd July this year a car crashed into a lamp post on Binstead Road in Ryde. The street light lantern was left hanging precariously by its wiring when it broke free from the lamp post.

The views/opinions expressed in these comments are solely those of the author and do not represent those of Island Echo. House rules on commenting must be followed at all times.

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Mark
Guest
Mark

The advisory states the the Luma fault results in loose bolts and/or worn threads and gives no warning signs before they drop – that doesn’t exactly sound safe to me.

The scale and pace of the remedial work would tend to back that up.

Have Highways England or Philips been approached for a comment?

Martin
Guest
Martin

It is said above that the manufacturer has covered the costs…so does it matter if they were safe or not ? If costs were covered then the IOW taxpayers have not paid to cover this. That’s how I read it…

Mr Martin Rant
Guest
Mr Martin Rant

The point is were they safe, and if not why was no warning given. i don’t think you would like a street light fitting dropping on your head from that height.

Cynical? Moi?
Guest
Cynical? Moi?

How ‘eco-friendly’ were those units then if they need to be replaced already as they’re rubbish??
No saving at all for the virtue-signallers then. Would have been better off keeping the old ones.
But then the brown paper envelopes used in the deals could no doubt be recycled once the contents have gone?

Stefan Attrill
Guest
Stefan Attrill

At least you have street lights.

When Northamptonshire County Council went bust, a decision was made to replace the old ‘orange’ lights with brand new LED ones. At the time, residents thought “fab”; however, what residents didn’t know was that not every light was going to replace with new ones.

Even with the new LED lights, the streets around Northamptonshire are darker than before. Many roads which used to have orange lights have been removed and not replaced. The streets impacted the most is where, a few years ago, Northamptonshire County Council installed cycle paths to encourage fitness. Nowadays during darker hours, they are not used, due to an increase in assault, robbery etc.

During my recent visit to the Island to see family, I was amazed at how bright St Johns Road, Ryde is during night hours. I wish Northampton had them.

It is evident since Northamptonshire Council removed street lights (to save money) that crime has rocketed in the county. Also, we no longer have enough coppers to deal with the increase in crime. Most of the time, coppers are dealing with anti-social behaviour. Chavs drunk too much or pissing in the streets. You may have seen recent footage on YouTube of a girl relieving herself directly outside Nandos – both front & back door in full view; lovely!

So, my fellow Caulkheads, think yourselves lucky that you have street lights.

Billy whizz
Guest
Billy whizz

Its the isle of wight mate not Northampton your comment is irrelevant.

Simon Bligh
Guest
Simon Bligh

Come back to the Island Stefan – bring your brother too 😉

Stefan Attrill
Guest
Stefan Attrill

Ah, thanks, Simon. It’s been years since I last saw you.

JHVF
Guest
JHVF

I’m not a great fan of Island roads, I don’t like tarmac which terminates in deep trenches at the side of the road, but on this occasion they seem to have recovered a possible hazard, there will always be mistakes in engineering we should be pleased that this one has been dealt with and move on.
PS. Hitting lamp posts with a vehicle is not recommended, the design will have been a balance between standing up to storms and reducing injury to people if a vehicle does hit it.

Alister Lee
Guest
Alister Lee

Instaling 5G , SNEAKY BASTARDS !

Bar
Guest
Bar

Get your tin hat ready then Lee

Barry Chantler
Guest
Barry Chantler

Think the guy is breaking Island Roads company rules smoking in a company vehicle all be it in cherry picker basket!
Seems to me Island Roads are trying to maximise the payments received from the PFI.
If the mentioned ‘bracket’ is checked & servicable why change it.

philip wheeler
Guest
philip wheeler

And the lord said let there be light and there was light ,for a few months though?

linda mashiter
Guest
linda mashiter

I wish they would get the traffic lights sorted on queen’s Road and Binsted Road trying to get past the temporary lights is dangerous twice my husband has nearly come off his mobility scooter

Golly
Guest
Golly

Does it really matter!! Jesus!! We got no f$&@ing better news!

Billy whizz
Guest
Billy whizz

Then don’t comment or read it u are just likethe people that watch tv dont like the programme then moan about it..turn over the channel ..or web page!!!!! Moron!!!!!!

Golly
Guest
Golly

Billy whizz don’t read my comment then you goon! If you don’t like it!! Read something else!
What a absolute idiot!!

Billy whizz
Guest
Billy whizz

Island roads are a joke..450 million over 25 years and they are spending a million a month in unnecessary repairs to justify there wage bill…go to dodnor and see the amount of 18 plate vehicles sat in the depot..btingback crown park they did a better job for 75 percent less..iwent past coop in shanklin recently and saw 10 men tarmacing a 1mtr hole absoloutley discustting..no wonder they love there company absolute rip off merchants..go to hell island roads..

Richard
Guest
Richard

The lighting company is paying. The new roads that they have laid are excellent and have been done to a high standard. Rebuilding the foundations of the roads does not come cheap. I once thought they were no good then I saw how good and fast their work was. They are doing an excellent job.

James
Guest
James

Have you seen seen some of the new Roads, cracking already

Mary Vine
Guest
Mary Vine

Once again in sentences please.

Golly
Guest
Golly

If you don’t like island roads don’t comment on it! Read some
Other news! No need for your stupid comments when u have no idea what you on bout! You probably haven’t even got a job!!!

So sshhhhhhhh!!

Samm baldry
Guest
Samm baldry

The pic of man in the mewp with cig in mouth is not actually from Island Roads… but Crown Highways from the mainland!!!

Red
Guest
Red

They don’t even use them in their own yard.

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