WHAT: Brazen copper thieves, aging equipment and insufficient replacement budgets have allowed as much as 20 percent of the Motor City’s 88,000 streetlights to go dark. Many lights are looted again as soon as they’re replaced.
HOW: Witnesses report seeing official-looking white utility trucks pull up to wooden streetlights and use a bucket-arm for cutting and stealing wires to newly reinstalled transformers.
WHAT’S BEING DONE: Detroit officials plan to concentrate on keeping lights working in more-densely populated areas prioritized in the Detroit Works program. But there are doubts the city has enough money to do even that much.