I-Team helps church property manager with electrical pole danger

An ABC7 I-Team Investigation
CHICAGO (WLS) -- The property manager of a church called the I-Team because he said his calls to Com Ed about a leaning electrical pole and low wires hovering a parking lot were going nowhere.

"My concern is that this pole is ready to fall over. I've called Com Ed," Gener Pierson said.

Pierson manages the property at the Covenant Presbyterian Church in Bucktown. So when he saw a tilted pole, a potential electric danger in the parking lot in January, he became alarmed.

"I called Com Ed about it a total of three times now. Back in January they came pretty quickly after I called, the Com Ed guy came and said they are aware of it because he identified a tag on the pole. He said that tag somehow identifies the pole as being dangerous or in need of repair or needing replaced. However they haven't fixed it yet," he said.

Pierson said he called Com Ed again Monday.

"It's just wrong. It shouldn't be this way. It's clearly a hazard," he said.

He became even more concerned after recent rain and heavy winds. He said after still not getting a response on Wednesday, he emailed the I-Team.

"I'm just frustrated and concerned about safety. You don't need to be an engineer to realize that line is so tight it's about ready to break and it's over a sidewalk where a bunch of kids-we have activities going on at the church almost every week and you know the likelihood of it breaking while somene is walking by is low, but it's still a concern," Pierson said.

So the I-Team reached out to Com Ed Wednesday afternoon.

"Hopefully Com Ed gets the message and sees how serious it is and has it repaired," Pierson said.

The next morning, the pole was being fixed. Com Ed workers replaced the pole with a new one, and the wires no loner hover.

Com Ed released a statement saying, "Safety is a priority for Com Ed and we regularly inspect our poles and schedule needed maintenance. The pole on Dickens had been previously inspected and tagged for replacement. We were made aware that recent heavy rain and wind conditions had caused more damage to the pole. As a result, Com Ed crews safely removed the pole and replaced it without interruption to local residents."

Pierson told the I-Team he's relieved everything is now fixed.

If you need to report a dangerous power line or a leaning pole, you should first call Com Ed but you can also call the village or city where you live. If power lines are on the ground, call police or the fire department immediately.
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