City of­fi­cials to hold LED street­light pre­sen­ta­tions

Yuma Sun - - NEWS - FROM STAFF RE­PORTS

Fol­low­ing suc­cess­ful tests and City Coun­cil ap­proval, Yuma’s Pub­lic Works Depart­ment is pre­par­ing to re­place the city’s ap­prox­i­mately 7,000 street­lights with en­ergy-ef­fi­cient light-emit­ting diode light­ing, bet­ter known as LEDs.

The city in­vites res­i­dents to learn more about the tran­si­tion by at­tend­ing any one of three up­com­ing open house meet­ings.

Through this change, the city says it will save in elec­tric­ity costs while also mak­ing road­ways safer with im­proved light­ing.

Meet­ings will be held at the fol­low­ing times, dates and lo­ca­tions: 5:30 p.m. Thurs­day, Oct. 12, at the Yuma Readi­ness and Com­mu­nity Cen­ter, 6550 E. 24th St. (cor­ner of 24th Street and Araby Road); 5:30 p.m. Thurs­day, Oct. 19, at the Yuma Pub­lic Works Ser­vices Build­ing, 155 W. 14th St.; and 5:30 p.m. Thurs­day, Oct. 26, at the Yuma Civic Cen­ter, 1440 W. Desert Hills Drive.

LED street­lights can pro­vide a 65 per­cent re­duc­tion in en­ergy usage from the cur­rent tech­nol­ogy, plus sig­nif­i­cant an­nual util­ity and main­te­nance sav­ings, ac­cord­ing to a city press re­lease. The cost of the project should be paid back in about 5.5 years.

LEDs last three to four times longer than ex­ist­ing high-pres­sure sodium street­lights. Most LED fix­tures are rated to main­tain at least 70 per­cent of their light out­put for 100,000 hours, which is about 20 years, or dou­ble the 10-year war­ranty pe­riod.

In ad­di­tion to the ex­tended life­cy­cle and lower re­place­ment costs, the city said, LEDs re­sult in re­duced light pol­lu­tion at night and im­proved and more uni­form light qual­ity. Be­cause they use less en­ergy, LEDs also help to re­duce car­bon emis­sions.

LEDs also make colors look brighter and closer to true nat­u­ral color, the city said. Be­cause ob­jects ap­pear brighter and sharper un­der LEDs, po­lice and other safety per­son­nel pre­fer them to older street­light tech­nolo­gies.

Be­sides the longer life­span and lower light pol­lu­tion, LED lights have sev­eral other ben­e­fits com­pared to sodium lights. LEDs re­turn to full lu­mi­nance in­stantly in the event of a power fail­ure, un­like bulbs that re­quire heat­ing time upon res­tart; this makes neigh­bor­hoods bright again in­stantly after power out­ages, and is good for ath­letic fields as well.

LEDs are ad­di­tion­ally be­lieved to be less at­trac­tive to noc­tur­nal in­sects. And LEDs tend not to burn out; in­stead, their bright­ness fades over time.

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