February 14, 2009

Dangling, abandoned poles still pose headaches for city

Dangling from a cable off Stafford Avenue is a three-foot section of a utility pole that nobody wants to admit belongs to them.

“Nobody wants to take ownership of it,” said city Councilor Mike Rimcoski. “It’s an accident waiting to happen.”

City officials said that Connecticut Light & Power has checked out the pole and determined that it’s not one of theirs.

Other utility companies have been notified, but so far nothing’s been done to remove the potential hazard.

Dale Clift, the city attorney, said that abandoned utility poles are “a perennial problem” for Bristol. The orphaned poles remain standing after whoever installed them has no further need of them, he said.

Rimcoski said the section dangling near the corner of Stafford Avenue and Marvin Street is a particularly dangerous problem.

“It’s just a piece of pole and right now it’s being held by a cable line,” Rimcoski said, adding that it could fly down on someone in a strong wind.

A Connecticut state senator, Bob Duff, a Norwalk Democrat, introduced a measure this session that would require the timely removal of double and bare utility poles.

The proposed law would require the state Department of Public Utility Control to establish uniform procedures and time schedules for removing excess utility poles across the state. A legislative committee is looking into it.

City officials have long complained about their inability to get the various utility companies, which include phone, cable and power providers, to remove old poles when new ones are installed.

At one point last year, there were more than 200 orphaned poles in Bristol, by the city’s count. Some have since been removed.

Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.
Contact Steve Collins at scollins@bristolpress.com


Anonymous said...

Before he became mayor, Ward moaned and groaned about the poles.
Now that he is in the seat, he isn't getting anything done. In fact, it is becomeing worse.

Easy to criticize from the sidelines, wasn't it Artie?

Anonymous said...

When Johnson becomes mayor, he will use his influence at CLP to get the job done.

Vote Johnson!

Anonymous said...

Sounds like lots of people have moaned and groaned about the poles for a long time. No one else was able to get rid of them either. Pretty easy for you to criticize from the side lines, isn't it 10:50?

Anonymous said...

Johnson can take care of the poles. He can go to CL&P, slam some doors, stomp his feet and hold his breath until they do something about it!!! LOL!!!!

Anonymous said...

Attorney Clift explained the procedure for determining ownership at the last city council meeting. They're going through the required channels. They've eliminated one or two probable owners already.

I really don't understand why these facts were not more clearly stated in the article unless the intent was to just get people fired up about nothing.

If the city just took it down without determining who the owner was then the city might be liable for potential damage. That would not be the responsible thing to do.

Steve Collins said...

It never occurred to me that anyone would think the city should take down utility poles.
But "proper channels" for that dangling piece have already taken at least three months. That's ridiculous, thought the city may be faultless.

Anon said...

The City has at least a couple of map showing the utility poles and who owns them. There are only two entities responsible for them: CL&P, or ATT(SNET). So it is as easy as looking on the map and calling up whichever party is responsible; not rocket science.

If the pole had been damaged in an accident, then the City MAY have cut the pole to remove a hazard, but that wouldn't make the City responsible to remove the rest.

Anonymous said...

Why is the city allowing those poles that have been taken down to lie around in piles, making Bristol look like a dump?

I have complained to the mayors office, but after a year, I have seen no progress

Anonymous said...

Many of those poles are still lying along side the roads.

When are you going to have them picked up Art???