By LESLIE COLLINS
May 15, 2013
It will cost $30,000 and take about three weeks to replace the stolen pedestrian signal poles, bases and heads at Interstate 70 and The Paseo.
A Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) field worker discovered the thefts on Monday, May 14, and a report has now been filed with the Kansas City Police Department. A total of 11 pedestrian signal poles, bases and heads were stolen.
“They’re likely aluminum thieves,” MoDOT Assistant District Engineer Chris Redline told Northeast News. “They’ll be selling the material for scrap for pennies on the dollar for what it’s going to cost the taxpayer to replace them. That’s the sad part.”
To Redline’s knowledge, this is the first time MoDOT has dealt with an aluminum theft in the Kansas City area. Copper thefts, however, are a common occurrence.
“MoDOT, just like every other company in the country, is fighting copper theft. We’ve had that,” he said.
Only MoDOT employees or authorized contractors are allowed to access the signals, he said.
“Please call the police and let them know if there’s something funny going on,” Redline said. “That could really help stop some of this.”
With the pedestrian signals currently out of service, Redline said he encourages pedestrians to use extra caution when crossing the intersection.