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Street lights still out along Plank Road

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BATON ROUGE - A busy section of Plank Road is still in the dark after nine months without street lights. 

Last month, residents in Brownsfield asked city leaders to repair the street lights along the road that have been out since a construction project started in January.

Neighbors met yet again Tuesday night at the Brentwood Home Association meeting to discuss the lack of progress. George Millican lives in Brownsfield and said everyone driving down the section of Plank Road is being left in the dark.

Fred Raiford works for the Department of Public Works and said getting the lights back on isn't as simple as one would think. 

"Wiring and a lot of the conduit and the actual poles being removed as part of the construction process it doesn't make it easy to go back and re-install and put the lights back again and still meet the lighting requirements that the state also mandates," Raiford said. 

Raiford said one of the temporary solutions would include adding temporary lighting to the roadway before the actual street lights can be turned back on.

"I did chat with the district administrator to see if we could install some temporary lighting out there, not like what they had before but at least some lighting out there for a safety aspect because it is a problem," Raiford said.

Millican said he and his neighbors are patient, but that they want a permanent solution to the problem.

"We don't want a temporary fix, we want to definitely a permanent fix you know you sometimes do things temporary then they say well you know that's fine and then leave it alone for so long, we definitely want them to get it done right," Millican said.

Entergy released a statement regarding the lighting situation, saying "We are waiting for approvals from the DOTD before we can proceed with the repair work required to energize the lights along Plank Road in Brownsfield."

The DOTD said the district administrator has been in contact with the city Department of Public Works and they're working through the permitting process to reach a solution.

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