Summerville neighbors upset with town response to leaning poles

{}By Ava Wilhite

SUMMERVILLE, S.C. (WCIV) -- It's hard to imagine people still having problems stemming from this winter's ice storms, but some people in Summerville say leaning power poles are a big problem.

But SCE&G disagrees.

The ice from last January's ice storm is long gone, but Atlantic Street resident Linda Whetsell said she's been living in fear ever since. Whetsell said during the storm a large tree fell on power lines causing connected poles to lean.

"I'm concerned because it's electricity. My house could catch on fire or one of my grandchildren could be playing and the pole will fall or snap or whatever," said Whetsell.

She said she's made multiple phone calls to the town and her electricity provider, but the answer is always the same.

"We'll get this thing fixed pretty soon. It's not a huge priority, it's not of eminent danger of falling and causing damages or injuries so, SCE&G is trying to coordinate with the cable company, to work on the lines, give the lines some slack so the pole can be straighten up and their working diligently to get that done," said Summerville's Director of Public Works Russ Cornette.

According to a spokesman for SCE&G, the utility is aware of the leaning poles, but doesn't consider it to be a public safety problem.

The utility's representative said they plan to straighten the pole, but first the cable company's repair crew need to give the lines more slack.

Atlantic Street neighbors are convinced the next storm could cause the poles to fall.

"Come and take a second, third look, or whatever the case might be so they can repair this to eliminate the threat of future problems," said Atlantic Street neighbor Charles McDuffie.

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