CHICAGO (CBS) — Light poles across the city continue to pose a major risk to both pedestrians and drivers.
Another one fell in the Loop at Adams Street and Wabash Avenue just Monday morning. No one was injured, and the the city said wind was to blame.READ MORE: Listen Live: Supreme Court Hears Arguments In Major Mississippi Abortion Case
On Monday night, CBS 2’s Meredith Barack looked into how this is happening time and time again.
“When you have a combination of high wind and light poles that already have a weakened base, that is when the probability of having these light poles fall over increases,” said Dr. Sammy Tin, a professor of Materials Science and Engineering at the Illinois Institute of Technology.
Dr. Tin has worked with the CBS 2 Investigators since 2015 to expose decaying light poles.
“Under certain circumstances, if the maintenance is not made to these poles on a regular basis, then there’s potential for these poles to fail and fall over,” Tin said.
The pole that fell on Monday is just one of several dangerous light poles into which the CBS 2 investigators have looked.
And in February of 2020, a rusted city light pole fell onto the car of a 25-year-old in Streeterville, leaving her with a concussion and other injuries.READ MORE: Needle Found On Gas Pump Nozzle At Shell Gas Station In Chicago Ridge
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Data from 311 show 970 total complaints of damage to light poles so far in 2021.
In the Loop alone, there have been 214 total complaints of light pole damage so far this year.
But none were made for the light pole at Adams and Wabash until 7:56 a.m. Monday, when the light pole fell.
The city would only confirm wind knocked it over, and said they would get back to us as to whether or not they were looking into rust on the base.
Dr. Tin said to prevent this from happening again, regular inspections are necessary – especially if the city wants to prevent falling poles from hurting people or damaging property.
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Light pole improvement could be on the horizon.MORE NEWS: Truck Stolen From Portage Park Car Dealership
In November 2020, Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced a five-year capital plan that included $112.3 million to replace 4,000 aging light poles.