Hinckley Township, residents unite to get dangerous utility pole taken down

Published: Oct. 24, 2022 at 6:00 PM EDT
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HINCKLEY, Ohio (WOIO) - For more than a year, the utility pole on the corner of Ridge and Mattingly roads in Hinkley Township has been creating safety concerns.

“I tend to believe there’s going to be a car in my front lawn here... and I don’t know what else to do about it,” neighbor Fred Sheehan said.

Sheehan told 19 News a car slammed into the pole a year ago, and ever since he’s been trying to get someone to remove it before it crumbles.

He reached out to 19 News after calling the township led to no real results.

The 19 Troubleshooter team called back, hoping to get some clarity on the issue.

“They told me they’ve got poles that have been non-serviceable for years and sometimes they’ll strap that pole to a new pole waiting for people to take lines off of it, I don’t find that to be acceptable” said Trustee Jack Swedyk.

Our team contacted FirstEnergy to see where they were on getting rid of the pole and we were sent the following statement:

Safety is our top priority, and we’ve done all that we can do within our boundaries to address this pole situation. While this utility pole is owned by FirstEnergy, it cannot be removed until all telecommunications companies have transferred their service to the new, adjacent utility pole, which was replaced by FirstEnergy in 2021 after a vehicle struck the pole.

FirstEnergy has made multiple attempts over the past year to notify the telecommunications companies (Frontier, Windstream, Time Warner Cable, Medina County Fiber Network and Spectrum) to transfer their service to the new pole so that the damaged pole can be removed ASAP.

Customers have the option to file a complaint with the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) online at https://puco.ohio.gov/help-center/file-a-complaint or by calling 1-800-686-7826.”

Now, Sheehan and his neighbors are still waiting for five companies to do one job.