Hebron upgrades traffic lights
HEBRON – It’s not just your imagination; Hebron’s traffic lights are bigger and brighter since the village replaced its traditional signals with new Light Emitting Diode (LED) lights.
“ Essentially, it’s already done,” said Village Administrator Mike McFarland. He said the new traffic lights require onetenth of the electricity of the old traditional lights, are brighter, and last nearly 10 times longer. Specifically, McFarland said the traditional traffic lights drew 9 amps, but the LED lights draw 0.9 amps. “There’s a significant savings there,” he said.
Jess Howard Electric of Blacklick, won the bid and replaced two-thirds of Hebron’s traffic lights, including bulbs and composite housings, for $16,000 total. “We know the advantages of LED,” said McFarland, who added that the $16,000 came out of the village’s 2010 budget – there were no grants or alternative funding. He said LED upgrades had already replaced lights at the Arrowhead Drive and US 40, and the Enterprise Drive and Ohio 79 intersections.
McFarland estimates the LED traffic lights will save Hebron roughly $4,000 per year in energy costs, meaning they will pay for themselves in four years. “The savings will increase as energy costs go up,” he said. The LED lights last roughly 15 years and the composite housings will last indefinitely. The traditional incandescent bulbs would last a year, maybe two before being replaced.
McFarland said traffic signals’ physical size surprised him. “They’re bigger than you think,” he said. The vast majority of people are only familiar with traffic lights that hang high over the street on a wire. Once they’re seen at ground level, they’re actually pretty big. Some citizens have already commented to McFarland that the new LED lights appear larger than the old ones. “They’re brighter; they’re safer, and they use less electricity,” he said.