SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) – Have you noticed several street lights on Syracuse interstates and ramps not working? If so, you’re not alone.

The Your Stories Team has received several complaints about dark stretches of highway where lights are off or not working.

One viewer writes:

Will the street lights currently out on I-690 and I-81 be fixed?

The YS Team spoke with Syracuse’s Street Lighting Manager, Ken Towsley, to learn more about the problem.

Towsley said there’s currently about 120 lights either not working or missing on I-690 and I-81. That includes off and onramps to the highways. That number represents about 13% of the nearly 900 lights installed on those interstates and ramps within city limits.

Towsley said outages are due to blown fuses, corroded wires and loose connections. He adds that missing lights are usually caused by wind damage, accidents and salt corrosion that leads to a pole to fall.

Towsley, who was appointed the Street Lighting Manager in 2020, said the city has been trouble shooting lighting problems the past 18 months. Adding that before the latest efforts to address issues, there was a lack of maintenance on the lights for years.

Towsley said there’s not a quick fix to the outage problems.

First City crews have to figure out exactly what the problem is, then work with a third party contractor to close lanes so repairs can be made.

He also said the City has to weigh costs and figure if it’s worth doing a major lighting upgrade in areas where the interstate will be coming down for the  I-81 project.

According to Towsley, the City plans on replacing 30 light poles in mid-December.

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