Shining the light on Albany crime -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Shining the light on Albany crime

Deputy Chief Mark Scott Deputy Chief Mark Scott
Director of Utility Operations Jimmy Norman Director of Utility Operations Jimmy Norman

Police say criminals don't like to go out into the light at night.  That's why they say street lights can be a good crime deterrent.  

Albany Police help the utility workers know which lights are out.  New technology the city is testing now could make that job easier.

When the street lights are out in some parts of Albany at night, it can be very dark and a little frightening.  Police say criminals don't like light.

"Street lights. Personal light. Security lights are all very helpful in helping deter crime and make things more visible," said Albany Police Deputy Chief Mark Scott.

There are more than 12,000 street lights in Albany, and on a typical day five technicians on duty changing 20 to 30 a day.  But many of the street lights are put out on purpose.

"Folks that are up to no good, just trying to do things under the cover of darkness. They shoot them out or sabotage them to get rid of the light," Albany Utilities Director of Utility Operations Jimmy Norman said.

It's hard to spot the sabotaged lights during the day, so Police officers on patrol at night mark and report street lights they see out. "Utilities gives us cases of this marking tape, and the officers will canvas neighborhoods, and mark every pole they see," Scott said.

Albany officials are currently testing several size and make LED street lights.  The LED's use less power and are brighter and also are much harder to knock out.  The big issue, they cost a lot more $600 to $700 a bulb.

"As more people are using LED's, the price is coming down. It's getting a little bit more appealing and a little bit more economical to move the city in that direction," Norman said.

So until then, city officials ask you to report street lights that are out.  Keeping the city bright at night, to keep criminals uncomfortable.

To report a street light in Albany that's out, call 311 and give them as much information as possible so that crews can locate it. And Albany 311 has an app as well, that you can use as well.

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