Lighting at interchanges on I-70 and I-15 in south-central and southern Utah has been delayed by federal regulations. The Federal Highway Administration wants "crash testing" of poles on which lights will be installed.
Lighting is scheduled at five I-70 intersections in Sevier County, near Salina, Sigurd, Richfield (two) and Sevier Junction. Those on I-15 are at Scipio, Millard County, and Parowan, Iron County.The project was approved by the Utah Department of Transportation, and a bid-opening date set when the state was notified that poles were not approved, said Sterling Davis, District 3 engineer at Richfield. "We don't know how long it will be before we can move forward again," he said.
UDOT contracted a firm to test the poles.
The federal government wants the poles designed to break when struck by a vehicle, decreasing the possibility of fatalities. Most of those in place have the "crash feature" but have not been tested or received federal approval.
"We are hopeful that FHA will approve these poles so we can continue to have a uniform type of pole for maintenance purposes," Davis said. UDOT is required to conform to federal requirements because about 95 percent of the costs of interstate highways is funded from federal government coffers.