Confusion leaves Leechburg Bridge in the dark |
Valley News Dispatch

Confusion leaves Leechburg Bridge in the dark

Chuck Biedka
Louis B. Ruediger | Tribune-Review
The Leechburg Bridge, shown Friday, March 9, 2018.

The lights have been off for a while on the Leechburg Bridge, but officials will have to figure out who is responsible for them before they can be fixed.

PennDOT District 12 in Westmoreland County is in charge of maintenance for the bridge that carries Route 56 into Armstrong County.

Spokesman Jay Ofsanik said this week that PennDOT contracted with West Penn Power to inspect and fix the lights.

“Obviously, we want this completed as soon as possible,” Ofsanik said.

West Penn Power disagrees. Spokesman Todd Meyers said Friday that the light equipment on the span belongs to PennDOT or Leechburg.

The electric utility supplies power to the lights and owns the meter, he said, but anything beyond the meter is PennDOT’s or the borough’s responsibility to repair. No maintenance agreement for the bridge lights has been found, Meyers said, but once the faulty light head is identified and repaired, all the lights likely will work.

Leechburg Councilman Chuck Pascal and other borough officials discussed the matter this week.

“It must be an electrical problem, because all the bulbs are out,” Pascal said.

Council President Robert “Tom” Foster said the borough isn’t responsible for light maintenance.

“It’s PennDOT,” he said. “A couple of years ago we sent someone there to replace bulbs, and PennDOT said no. We can’t do it. So it’s all up to them.”

Mayor Wayne Dobos said the lights have been off for a while. “It must be at least a month,” he said, and the lights should be replaced for safety reasons.

The lights would help pedestrians, officials said. Also, the lights are aesthetically pleasing, Dobos said.

It was hard to determine which PennDOT district was in charge of bridge maintenance, the mayor said. The bridge starts in District 12 in Westmoreland County, crosses the Kiski River and ends in Armstrong County in PennDOT District 10.

Chuck Biedka is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 724-226-4711, [email protected] or via Twitter @ChuckBiedka.

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