NORWALK, Conn. – Traffic lights will hang again at the intersection of Main and Wall Streets, Norwalk Mayor Harry Rilling said.
The lights came down with a crash a little over a week ago when a pole collapsed for no obvious reason. Department of Public Works Director Hal Alvord, who now says the lights weighed a total of 435 pounds, said he would have a temporary pole put up as soon as possible.
Some people have said that the intersection is working better with stop signs but Rilling said that is not going to be a long-term change.
“I’ve heard the same sentiments expressed recently, albeit only from a very few sources,” Rilling said in an email. “The claim is traffic moves more smoothly through the intersection. Obviously we could not leave the signs in the middle of the road, they would have to be erected like other signs at various intersections around the city. However, that is a relatively busy intersection and with two turning lanes coming off Wall Street, it could be a bit dangerous. I do not believe that intersection is a good location for a three-way stop sign. There are no plans for the Traffic Authority to look at that intersection.”
There were eight downed traffic lights visible in a photograph taken by a passerby and sent to Nancy On Norwalk. Alvord did not immediately know how much each light weighed but said this week that they came to a total of 435 pounds. The weight of the lights ranged from about 35 to 60 pounds, Alvord said, depending on how many lenses the light had and what kind of equipment was in the housing.
Alvord said recently that the pole corroded from within. On Monday he speculated that there could have been another cause.
“At the time of night someone could have hit it with a vehicle,” Alvord said.
Wouldn’t it have a dent?
“That’s what we thought, too,” he said. “So I’m not going to make that claim, and it’s almost impossible to make at this point.”
The NoN commenter going under the name of Spanner said there had been an accident in that vicinity the night before. Norwalk Police Sgt. Terry Blake provided an accident report of that incident: On July 10 a car parked in the rear parking lot of El Mexicano restaurant at 22 Wall St. suffered minor damage when it was struck by a hit and run driver. The light fell on July 12.
Alvord said that DPW is going forward with its plan to put up a wooden pole there as a temporary solution. Then, “We’re going to be replacing that signal as part of the traffic signal program,” he said.