Youngstown mayor working to urge residents to report broken streetlights
By David Skolnick
Mayor Jamael Tito Brown said he’s working with FirstEnergy to urge residents to report nonworking streetlights.
At a Tuesday news conference, Brown said working streetlights result in safer areas.
“It’s a crime-prevention tool,” he said. “If there’s an increase in lighting, criminals are less likely to go onto a street. We’re trying to put a coordinated effort together with FirstEnergy and make sure lights are turned on. If we work in an effort to get the lights on, it will improve the city.”
In the past two weeks, the city’s street department reported about 80 streetlights not working downtown and about 20 to 30 out on Belmont Avenue from Rayen Avenue to Gypsy Lane, Brown said. The lights were replaced by FirstEnergy, he said.
“There are a lot of lights out in the city,” Brown said. “We are going to focus on finding where the lights are out.”
Brown also wants to eventually have LED lights in city streetlights as they last longer and are more energy-efficient than the lights currently used by FirstEnergy.
The mayor encouraged citizens to contact FirstEnergy when a streetlight is out.
To report a streetlight outage to FirstEnergy, either call 888-LIGHTSS [888-544-4877] and say “streetlights” after the greeting, or go online to firstenergycorp.com, click on the “our electric companies” dropdown box at the top of the page and then select the proper company and go to “report lighting problem” under the outages category.
When reporting an outage, leave your name and phone number, the address where the streetlight is located, the number on the utility pole if possible, and what’s wrong with the streetlight, such as damaged pole, broken light fixture, light is off at night, on during the day or it flickers.
FirstEnergy will respond within three days to any reports of a broken light, said Christopher J. Eck, its senior communications representative.
If it’s a bulb, it can be replaced on the spot, he said. If it’s a wiring or broken utility pole, it will take longer, he said.