Vandalized lights costs could pass on to customers - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Vandalized lights at Riverwalk becoming a problem

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -

You may go to the Riverwalk to run, walk the dogs or just enjoy the view but if you've been there at night, you may have noticed a few lights are missing.

It is becoming a growing problem for Georgia Power. "Occasionally, we have some people, go down there and vandalize the lights on the Riverwalk," says Georgia Power External Affairs Manager Robert Watkins. "We had maybe a few months that it hadn't happened, but then it looks like it's happening again."

Georgia Power says the problem has been going on for years. Four more fixtures were broken last weekend, in the Lake Oliver area.

"Those are specialized globes. The globe and the head which controls the light is about $304," says Watkins. "What they do is climb halfway up the pole and start rocking it until the top flies off."

Georgia Power says the light poles are made out of fiberglass and can easily be broken from someone swinging back and forth on them.  They say there's very little wiring inside of the poles and most likely, its aluminum. So, whoever has been coming out and breaking the lights is doing it for fun.

They have spent over $14,000 repairing lights, but that tab could be passed on to you.

"When the public service commission reviews our costs, and if our costs are higher, then the rate goes up," said Watkins.

As of Tuesday morning, all of the broken lights near the lake have been replaced.

If you have any information on who could be turning out the lights, you can call Crime Stoppers at 706-653-3188, for a cash reward.

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