Replacing and repairing a fallen streetlight can cost up to $8,000 in Victoria.
On Tuesday morning, a driver collided with a streetlight near the intersection of Finlayson and Cook streets. Traffic was delayed for several hours as crews from the City of Victoria loaded the streetlight onto a truck and assessed the rest of the damage.
City staff are still working to determine the extent of the damage at Cook and Finlayson but repairs could cost thousands.
If only the streetlight itself was affected, crews can put up a temporary pole, said Ross Kenny, manager of construction and operations for the transportation department. A replacement streetlight can cost between $1,500 and $2,000.
The repair job becomes more complicated and more expensive if the concrete base was also impacted. The base anchors the street and traffic lights underground, Kenny said. The bases are five-feet wide and about as tall as a person which means they’re set deep in the ground. To access the bases, crews need to excavate which increases the costs, Kenny explained.
Also, once things are exposed, staff often come across old electrical equipment that must be brought up to code before the hole can be closed, Kenny said. City staff are aware of the areas in town where equipment may not be up to code and an upgrade process is underway, but if code issues are noticed during other repair work, they must be corrected right away.
Between the streetlight replacement, excavation, base repairs and electrical upgrades, one collision with a streetlight can cost up to $8000, Kenny explained. Often, the driver’s insurance will cover some of the costs for replacement and repairs, he noted.
According to the Langford Engineering Department, replacing a standard streetlight can cost the City anywhere from $8,000 to $10,000 while the ornamental streetlights can be replaced for under $6,000.