Copper thieves disable 450 street lights in Fayette and surrounding counties

The state Transportation Cabinet says copper thieves recently disabled about 450 street lights along interstates and other major roads in Fayette and other Central Kentucky counties.

The damage could total up to $500,000, depending on how many lights have to be completely replaced rather than simply repaired, according to a news release. Many of the lights that are affected are on the ramps for interstates 64 and 75.

The state says it plans to fight the problem by installing surveillance cameras and a monitoring system that will detect instances of tampering with a lighting circuit. It will also have people periodically driving through affected areas to check for suspicious activity.

The Transportation Cabinet is asking the public to watch for people and parked vehicles around highway lights. The only people who should be working on the lights would be driving government vehicles or service trucks for Arrow Electric Co., according to a news release.

Anyone who sees suspicious activity should call local police.