Tag Archives: street light

Warren Avenue barrier to get better lighting

The in basket: Charlie Ballew writes, “Twice this month I almost hit pedestrians (probably PSNS workers going to work) during the morning at 4th and Warren Avenue and 5th and Warren Avenue.  The pedestrians were wearing dark clothing and I didn’t see them until I was almost on them.

“We need to have overhead street lights at these two intersections,” he said.

The out basket: Charlie’s comment echoes that of

Dale Gilchrist, who told an almost identical story back in March 2013, shortly after the center barrier was installed on Warren.

The city’s position then came from street engineer Gunnar Fridriksson, who said, “a recent city traffic study showed little nighttime accident history on Warren at that point.

“The accidents were primarily daytime – very few nighttime accidents,” he said. “I think there were four total for the report period in our traffic study – all vehicle accidents.

“So street lighting was not part of the design effort with the latest improvement. That being said, we have been trying to get resources to look at overall street lighting levels citywide. It is on our to-do list, just as we have time to get to it.”

I asked Gunnar’s successor, Jerry Hauth, what’s new and he said better lighting is coming to that stretch of Warren. He said Puget Sound energy “will be augmenting the lighting in this area in conjunction with the work on Americans with Disability Act ramps the state will start to install next spring.”

He included a preliminary sketch of the work, which shows four 35-foot wood poles to be installed with 102-watt LED lights that appear to go on diagonal corners of the two intersections.

Accidents prompt better lighting north of Silverdale

The in basket: George, who didn’t include a last name, asked in an e-mail, “There are three new LED street light just south of the intersection at Mountain View Road and Silverdale Way.
“Just wondering if you know why they are now there,” he wrote.

The out basket: They are part of Kitsap County’s ongoing program of making perilous locations safer, much like the new guardrails we discussed last time.

Jeff Shea, Kitsap County traffic engineer, said, “This Silverdale Way location is covered by our federal safety grant projects.

“Several motorists have left the roadway at this location. Two of the collisions involved fatalities.  One was a motorcyclist going too fast, and the other a motorist speeding under the influence of alcohol and drugs.

A guardrail was installed to protect motorists from going over the embankment.  When we look at the accident records if a number of the collisions occur at night, and we feel the darkness may have contributed to the collisions, lighting up the roadway is an option that we consider. In this case, we opted to have the street lights installed.”


Peril near Esquire Hills from lack of street light

The in basket: Bruce Reed wrote in November to say, “We have been in contact with the school and county officials to get a street light placed at the crosswalk at John Carlson Road and Berkeley Place at the corner of Esquire Hills Elementary School.

“Since fall began were reminded of how dark it is in the  morning when the kids are headed to school or on the nights the school has planned activities.

“There are two other crosswalks by the school and they both have street lights, however,  this particular crosswalk is dangerous,  especially with the sharp (blind) corner just before the crosswalk. My wife and I have attempted to cross the street at night using that crosswalk and, not to our surprise, have we yet (to have) a vehicle stop at the crosswalk for us.

“This crosswalk is pitch black at night and in the early morning and it is next to impossible for a car’s driver to see pedestrians.  Now with the increasing amount of children walking to school, we have become concerned about  the safety  of the students, staff and parents.”

Bruce also described a scary situation in which residents were trying to help the victim of a crash at the intersection in 2010, at night.

“The driver of the car was frantically crying and in pain and was not able to get out of the car. She was a sitting duck in the middle of the road with no headlights as were the good Samaritan’s that were there trying to calm her down and help.  We were trying to signal cars with an umbrella but they really could not see us until the last minute.

“I understand that the county has procedure they follow when putting up street lights,” Bruce said, “and they told us it could take a year or more to get a light at this crosswalk. What I don’t understand is why the county can’t put safety first and make this a priority rather than a possible statistic.”

The out basket: Help is on the way, said Doug Bear of Kitsap County Public Works last month.

“We are proceeding with installing a street light there,” he said. “Street lights are installed by Puget Sound Energy. I don’t have any estimate of when that work is scheduled by them. As you reader indicated it does take time to work through the process from the request to the actual installation.”

Before the start of school next fall would be a good target, I’d say.

Mystery blue bulb at Harrison & Mile Hill Drive

The in basket: Every time I turn right from Harrison Avenue onto Mile Hill Drive in front of the China West restaurant with my wife in the car, she asks me if I’d found out the purpose of a blue light bulb inside a wire cage atop a short pole in front of the restaurant.

That’s more often than you might think. I always turn from Jackson Avenue and go through Parkwood rather than continue downhill to the signal where right turners are often backed up at the red light in the only lane.

The bulb is never lit, she told me, asking “What’s it for?”

The out basket: Doug Bear of Kitsap County Public Works says it’s not a light bulb at all.

“It’s a photocell that turns on the street light when it gets dark,” he said. “There are hundreds of them and on almost every street light.

“The one at China West happens to be at street level so is more visible than the others. The county does maintain them.”


Left-turn lane, street light requested at fatal accident site

The in basket: Roy Lundeen wrote to say he thinks the Holly Road/Wildcat Lake Road intersection, scene of a fatal accident involving a left turner last year, needs a left-turn lane and better lighting.

“If you are turning left from Holly Road onto Wildcat Lake Road (Lakeview Ave) and there is oncoming traffic,”  he said, “while you wait, the traffic you are holding up tends to pass you on the right shoulder, oft times not slowing down much.

“This is particularly noticeable at quitting time in the afternoon,” he said. “Since this turn is at the nearly 90-degree bend in Holly Road, the reduced sight distance/reaction time only increases the probability of a serious accident,” he said. “I feel like I have a bulls-eye target painted on my back.”

As for a street light, he said, “During our dark, drizzly, foggy winter nights it is very difficult to see where Wildcat Road actually is.  If the resident who lives near that intersection has his yard light on, that is very helpful, but it is not his responsibility to light up this intersection.”

The out basket: Doug Bear, spokesman for Kitsap County Public Works, says, “This intersection is one of about 20 around the county that we expect to receive illumination as part of a federal safety grant issued in 2009 known as High Risk Rural Road Program funds. We are in the process of finalizing the locations and designs, and hope to start construction within the next six months.”

Bill Edwards, transportation operations engineer for the county, handled the other part of Roy’s suggestion, saying that.the intersection is under study, but there are no immediate plans to revise it. There is nothing yet on the county’s road plan for the next six years scheduling work there.

“We are doing further engineering studies to determine if left-turn channelization is warranted at the intersection,” he said. “That study is scheduled to be complete in early October. If improvements are warranted, we will consider it in our next round of proposals in early 2011. We have already completed scoring projects for 2010.”

So will last year’s death increase the chances for a left-turn lane there? Jeff Shea, county traffic engineer gets that one.

“We certainly consider all reported accidents when evaluating intersection concerns,” he said. “A fatal collision doesn’t automatically trigger a mitigation project. Some fatal accidents involve driver error which we cannot always engineer a fix for.

“In this case, the (criteria) for a left turn lane are the number of turning vehicles versus the total traffic and opposing traffic. Once the project meets the (criteria), it competes for funding with the other proposed transportation improvement projects. The recent fatality there, as well as the complete accident history, is one of the many factors considered to determine which projects get funded each year.”

Reasons for new downtown PO traffic light


The in basket: Tracy in Port Orchard, who didn’t leave her last name, cut to the chase regarding the long-delayed new traffic signal in downtown Port Orchard, which still isn’t operational, and asked why the old lights were replaced at all. “It looks like they’re adding a couple huge street lights there too,” she added.

The out basket: Don Anders in the Olympic Region signal shop for state highways, says, “The existing signal system is 50 years old, the existing wood poles are in very poor condition, and we found that to rebuild this system is very difficult because of the existing seawall under the sidewalk. 

“The city began a project to replace the street lights in this corridor and it was discovered that the wood canopy over the sidewalk and these poles supporting the signal were in very poor condition.  We then moved this signal system up the priority list to address this need.” The new street lights are mounted atop the signal poles.

In a past Road Warrior column, Don said that traffic detection at the Bay Street-Sidney Avenue intersection, where the new signal is located, will be restored when it is operational. The old lights have been on timers since the repaving of Bay Street last summer.