Student talks safety concerns over lighting

posted in: Opinion | 0

As the seasons shift to fall and winter, the Pacific Northwest becomes a dark and dreary place. The tendency for rain or cloudy weather does not help the fact that there are less hours of daylight. Areas that lack proper lighting become even more glaring during this time of year because it stays dark out longer.

Pacific University’s campus seems to fall short when it comes to lighting. Especially the pathways on the east lawn. Inadequate lighting can cause students to feel unsafe when walking around campus after dark. Because it has started to get dark so early, students who
have later classes must rely on the lights along pathways or buildings.

Those who walk along the east lawn are forced to depend on the minimal lighting offered. Given all of the trees that surround campus, there is a high possibility for small branches to fall onto the walkways. If it is dark and there is very little lighting, this could make it hard for people to see objects that are on the path and therefore lead to injuries.

There is also the concern of possible attacks or other incidences that seem likely in a poorly lit area, especially if it is later at night. Even when there is no real threat to the students’ safety, there is a source of comfort that comes with well-lit pathways. There are potential reasons as to why the university allows that area on campus to have insufficient lighting.

It is possible that the lack of lighting on the east lawn is for energy conservation reasons. Maybe the cost and energy that would be used to light the pathways are greater than the benefits that would come from adding more lighting. It could also be that no one has realized the lighting problem yet this season. An obvious solution would be to add more lights along the pathways on the east lawn.

If for some reason this is not possible, the problem could also be improved if the other lights nearby the east lawn were replaced with ones that gave off more light. This would help illuminate the area without additional lighting. Regardless of the particular solution, Pacific may want to look into solving the campus lighting problem for the benefit of its students, their safety and overall comfort.


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