Pat Shingleton: "Arming...The Mast Arm"
The Mast Arm is a system of steel posts and arms that are anchored in concrete, 12-feet deep and are built to withstand Category 5 hurricanes. Miami began installing the Mast Arm in the 1980s and when eight hurricanes hit Florida in 2004 and 2005, more were installed. Installations of the Mast Arm can be seen in Baton Rouge. In years past you may have witnessed hurricane video showing stoplights swinging, blowing, dangling and falling from the hurricane's force. The Mast Arm encloses wiring and the stoplights into one unit, eliminating the traditional span-wire traffic signal. Florida Law requires Mast Arms at all intersections within 10 miles of the coast as Miami-Dade County completed its signal conversions. During recent storms none of the Mast Arms required replacement.