Darkness shades Montreal highways

Darkness shades Montreal highways

The network on the island of Montreal suffers from a lack of lighting this winter

Nearly a quarter of the lights on Montreal highways are out this winter due to breakage or lack of maintenance, according to local media. For Park-Extension residents using the highways in and out of the borough this represents a particular problem.

In November, of the 8,370 lamps on the highways of the island of Montreal, 1,981 were off, or 24%. This is indicated by data obtained from the Ministère des Transports et de la Mobilité durable du Québec (MTMQ) by Le Journal de Montréal in response to an access to information request.

The situation has not changed much since November. The most recent statements note a slight improvement, or now 1865 extinguished lights, indicated in an interview a spokesman for the ministry, Louis-André Bertrand, who could not however indicate the date of these new data.

This number is far from the standards of the ministry, which wants 85% of the lamps in its network to be functional. Note that this does not include local streets, where the streetlights belong to the City of Montreal. The data also exclude lamps located in tunnels, said Louis-André Bertrand.

This winter, the lack of lighting on the highways irritated many motorists. In January, the Anjou interchange had been plunged into darkness for a month following a power outage affecting 122 lights spread over some fifty lampposts. Many motorists complained of not seeing the markings on the ground.

The ministry blames winter for this situation. “Snow, cold and ice is hard on equipment. There are more light fixtures that are non-functional and the weather conditions make it more difficult to make repairs,” says Mr. Bertrand. More than 85% of the lights on Montreal’s highways use high-pressure sodium, a 40-year-old technology that requires maintenance every three years. By 2028, the department wants to migrate to LED light bulb technology, which will cost it $190 million for all of Quebec.

Source: Le Journal de Montréal