11May Shopper Dies Due to Failed Street Light

Jamie Taylor, 25, was ploughed down on a busy stretch of road, which should have been lit by streetlights, however the council had neglected to repair them. 

An inquest heard that Taylor suffered a fatal brain injury as he 'bolted' across the busy A38 close to Sutton Coldfield in Birmingham.

Due to the poorly lit state of the road, a passing motorist failed to spot him. The inquest heard the lights were reported as not working on October 24 last year.

However, three street lights, along with an illuminated road sign, were still out of action when the crash happened ten days later, on the evening of November 3.

Driver Lee Weston, who was heading north on the A38 towards Lichfield, said he did not see Taylor before there was a sudden 'impact on my windscreen'.

As government austerity cuts continue to damage local services, more and more local authorities are choosing to neglect street lighting or shut it down completely, as an easy cost-cutting option.

It has also been noted that the lack of street lighting may make it easier for robbers to opportunistically attack homes.

Just last month it was reported that armed robbers who shot dead a rich insurance executive in his luxury rural Dorset home hid in wait for the streetlights to go out before deciding to strike.

In this case the local council had opted to turn the streetlights off, in the early hours of the morning, in order to save costs. 

Coroner Emma Brown noted that she would write to Birmingham City Council demanding staff ensured all street lights in the area worked property.

More and more councils are starting to use LEDs for street lighting because of the little amount of maintenance they require and the long-life period that they offer.

She also asked for answers as to why authority officers were adamant only two lights, rather than three, were broken.


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