Seattle City Light has completed inspections of its streetlights from downtown to the southern end of its service territory. Crews continue to work North of Denny Way.
Inspection teams did not find any City Light equipment with contact voltage above 30 volts during Thursday night’s testing. In the past two days, however, they did identify three pieces of equipment owned by others in Burien that were energized – a parking lot light, a pedestrian light pedestal and a section of metal conduit. In each case, crews disconnected power. The owners are being notified of the problem.
The inspections are part of City Light’s ongoing safety testing efforts on all its 30,000 metal streetlight poles and nearby metal facilities.
City Light initiated testing after the death of a dog that stepped on an energized groundcover plate in Queen Anne in November and two other unrelated reports of energized metal streetlight equipment.
Two contractors – Davey Resources Group and Power Survey Co. – are conducting the testing.
The contractors have tested about 18,000 pieces of equipment or 60 percent of the total. They have found 18 instances of metal streetlights or groundcover plates with contact voltage of at least 30 volts. This is in addition to the seven locations previously identified by City Light, for a total of 25.
Areas where testing has been completed include Seattle Center, Downtown, SODO, Capitol Hill, First Hill, West Seattle, Madrona, Tukwila, Burien and City Light’s service territory in Renton, SeaTac and unincorporated King County.
The industry average for contact voltage potential with a metal streetlight pole is 0.3 percent. City Light’s findings to date are less than 0.2 percent.