Southport Lights Should Return in Next Week, Alderman's Office Says

By Serena Dai on January 3, 2014 2:10pm 

Slideshow
 A glitch in the electricity grid knocked out streetlights on Southport Avenue, bathing the street in light shed by beer signs and an amber glow from a cobbler's store.
Southport without streetlights
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LAKEVIEW — Street lights on Southport Avenue that have been out this week should be bright again within a week, the alderman's office said.

For the past week, lights on Southport between Addison and Newport have left the area dark. 

Lights randomly go out when a portion of the grid overloads or the circuit breakers trip, explained Sougata Deb, Ald. Tom Tunney's (44th) director of infrastructure and special projects, which is what happened on Southport. Tunney's office just heard about the outage on Friday, Deb said.

The city needs to reset the breaker in order for the lights to return, similar to when homeowners reset their circuit breakers to bring back electricity in a house, Deb said. 

The process to return electricity to street lights usually takes seven to 10 days due to backlogs and lack of manpower in the city, he said.

But Deb said their office will try to expedite the process as much as they can.

Despite Southport's outage, it's been a decent year for the random electricity overload outages, Deb said. Two years ago, lights went out "all the time," but there have been fewer reports of dark streets this year.

"It’s random," he said. "It just happens."

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