Readers Write: LED Street Lights in the Village of Great Neck

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Over the last few weeks, the local papers have been publishing letters to the editor and reporters’ articles regarding the Youngblood residence at 48 Colgate Road. Ms. Youngblood is represented by Tamara Harris who specializes in matrimonial law.

There was also a recent letter published sent in by an individual who belongs to a very small group of laypeople who write the same or similar letters to the local papers of small cities or towns making the same complaints to each of the tows relating to LED street lighting.

It should be noted that LEDs, fluorescent and incandescent bulbs can interrupt normal sleeping patterns. The body’s biology works in rhythms that are set by the amount of light and dark the body is exposed to. This is called a circadian rhythm.

Windowless or individuals who keep their shades drawn have lower test scores on sleep quality. That also is important with reference to others who have also complained such as the resident at 67 Radner Road. Both residences keep all their shades drawn.

Both 48 Colgate and 67 Radner have the same complaint. They state that the LED light in front or across the street from their residence has affected their sleep. The front page of a local paper had the cover page showing this light as it appears just before midnight. The same photographer then wrote an article on the alleged litigation.

The article was written without knowing anything about the function of LED streetlights that are now the major source of street lighting throughout the United States. All other types of lighting for streets are outmoded. When the reporter took the photograph he never looked or took a photograph of the residence across the street about 150-feet away.

The issue is: Do any of the people complaining about the LED street lighting suggest technically correct suggestions or are they just against the LED lighting and making frivolous and fraudulent allegations and claims?

On Feb. 4, a PowerPoint presentation was made at the Great Neck Village meeting on the study made on the two residences stated above and many other areas in the village. Every one of the photographs taken at night of the subject residences and many others documented the fact that all the LED streetlights focused only on the street as they do throughout the United States.

Not one of the subject lights shed any light on the front of the subject residences. The only light that did shed light on the bedroom at 67 Radner was the pole light in the front of their residence containing an incandescent shining light directly on their bedroom and the left side of the front of their residence. The right side had no evidence of light from the LED street lighting.

Conclusions? A plaintiff’s lawyer who did not verify the complaint by the Youngbloods. Their lawyer should have hired an expert to verify the claim before starting a frivolous lawsuit. The reporter who took the photograph allegedly in front of the 48 Radner residence made a false claim inferring that Youngblood’s bedroom and residence were exposed to the LED streetlight as shown on the front page of the local paper.

Consequences? Rumors were spread by the false reporting and the frivolous lawsuit against the village is wasting a lot of time and expense in having the Village attorney reply to a frivolous suit.

Dr. C. J. Abraham
Great Neck

11 COMMENTS

  1. There are acceptable LED street lights which are far better than those installed in Queens and at lower wattage for better visibilty. Even if a white light is not pointed directly at a window, the street and the sky will still reflect white light into the bedroom. Better choices which are warmer with lower blue content can be seen on the Gallery page at http://www.softlighthouston.com.

  2. Dr. Abraham makes a false conclusion that the Youngblood lawsuit is frivolous. In fact, Ms. Youngblood’s 14th amendment right to liberty has been trampled by the village of Great Neck shining an overly bright, high color temperature LED light directly onto her property. How is fighting for one’s right to liberty frivolous?

    Dr. Abraham made no mention of the color temperature of the street lights, nor any mention of how the large spike of blue wavelength light causes eye damage and leads to increased rates of breast cancer and diabetes. Dr. Abraham also made no mention of how frogs, birds, bats, and insects are affected by these lights, nor was there any mention of how light pollution overall has been increasing at an unsustainable rate of 2% per year.

    Ms. Younblood’s lawsuit would not have been necessary if the village of Great Neck had simply installed a 2200K, shielded and diffused LED light. Because of the egos of the council and lack of empathy for a suffering resident, Great Neck now finds itself on the wrong end of a lawsuit, wasting valuable taxpayer money.

    For anyone who supports the 14th amendment right to liberty, we encourage you to support Ms. Youngblood by donating to her GoFundMe campaign: https://www.gofundme.com/f/65xdxog

  3. Street lighting of any description is a medical problem. This is now well established. When all is said and done, darkness at night is normal and we should respect and cherish it. It is essential not only to the well-being of humans but also to all living organisms, such as birds, small mammals, insects and even plants. So what is the solution? In quiet residential and suburban areas all lighting should be motion operated and on an 11p.m. till dawn curfew. This will enable residents to sleep better, and maximise savings both in terms of money and energy. The environmental impact will be minimised. Rural communities should not be lit at all, and if anyone is campaigning to have these areas lit up at night, then really they should not be living there and would be better off living in a city. Residents who don’t want their homes illuminated should be respected, and if municipalities are requested to remove obtrusive lighting from outside their properties, they should comply without question. Exterior lighting therefore should come under strict environmental control and the free-for-all that prevails at the moment should be legislated out of existance.

  4. Remove lighting from suburban areas? That’s preposterous! Then there will be safety issues. This is not a rural area, and the neighbors of these complainants should be contacted as well so that THEIR rights are not violated by lack of lighting. These people should move to rural areas if they don’t want light. These are nuisance suits.

    • Friend, you can easily research this. Try googling LIGHT POLLUTION for starters.
      Fact is that outdoor light, if not properly shielded , can and does invade homes. Exposure to this light ..whether in the bedroom or because the person works at night , limits the body’s production of Melatonin which is a cancer fighting hormone that our bodies make at night while we are sleeping in the DARK. The result of all exposure to light during the nightime hours is a heightened risk of cancer.

  5. I was not advocating removing lighting from suburban areas. I said it should be motion operated and subject to curfew. In that way lighting will be available when needed. Does lighting really improve safety? Not necessarily. For one thing cars have headlights. Lighting also lulls drivers into a false sense of security in which they may take less care than they would if the road was unlit, and this may increase the number of accidents.

  6. To Anonymous: How does shining an eye damaging bright white light onto Ms. Youngblood’s private property and into her bedroom make pedestrians on the street any safer?

    The only thing Ms. Youngblood asked for is that the village live up to their promise to use a human-safe color temperature and to shield and diffuse the light. Why is the council so intent on lighting up Ms. Youngblood’s yard?

  7. Thank you for taking my call today, Dr. Abraham. I find you very pleasant and I like you, but I do need to respond to your erroneous article. I am going to attempt to address each paragraph.

    First of all, my Facebook Group, Ban Blinding LEDs, might be small, but isn’t that is the only way for groups to start? The Vietnam War Activists began their work in 1962 and it wasn’t until 1968 that it grew into be a National protest. I have no concerns over how small our group is because we are passionately devoted to this cause and and more and more join us everyday.

    We are not against LEDs, we are against the outdated LED technology that is currently being installed throughout the globe. The 3000, 4000, 5700K LED streetlights that are going up one after the other are old news. Technology is moving at such a rapid pace that in a few short years LEDs have evolved into beautiful ambient lighting, yet these old blue-rich white eye scorchers continue to be installed everywhere. I imagine it is because the contracts were signed and the money pocketed, so they are going up whether they harm people, plants, and animals or not. They very much do harm people, plants and animals. Birds, bees and trees, too. They harm every living thing including ocean life because blue light extends 10x deeper into water than Sodium Vapors. Ocean predators do not know whether it is day or night and they are suffering for it. So are the birds that now sing at midnight instead of 3:30 AM. They are all confused by 24 hours of “daylight”. This matters. Fireflies matter, too, but 40% of the firefly species are extinct because of light pollution. I know you asked me why I even care about birds because all they do is eat and shit. I will tell you why I care about birds. For the same reason I care about fireflies, because everything is interconnected so deeply that upsetting one area of nature offsets all nature. And, because I like birds and fireflies.
    It is known to everyone who owns a device that blue light at night does indeed affect the circadian rhythm. You said each person (you do not seem to care about other life forms) has a different biology and are affected differently. I would like to see peer-reviewed evidence that we are all so very different in this way. I would think all humans have similar circadian rhythms, but we can debate this later if you would like. I would also like to see your study regarding people who keep their blinds and shades drawn testing lower on sleep quality. I am going to bet that Judith Youngblood does not have her shades drawn during the day and I don’t know how you could possibly know if she does or not unless you live across the street from her and are constantly watching her property. I am, however, happy to hear there is another person bold enough to come forward and say they are also against excessively and uselessly bright LEDs in Long Neck. What are they? 4000K? I am pretty sure they are. 3000K is the AMA’s ceiling when it comes to Kelvin and their recommendation is to go with the lowest Kelvin possible. Lower Kelvin IS possible. But as you know, there are many other factors that figure into what creates responsible outdoor lighting.

    How do you know the article you mentioned was written by someone who knows nothing about the function of LEDs? How can you know that? I agree LEDs ARE the major source of lighting throughout the world. You stated that all other types of lighting are outmoded. I assure you blue-rich white LEDs themselves are outmoded. Do you have any idea how far LED technology has come in a few short years? I would advise you to Google it. All LED streetlights currently in place have been surpassed by far superior present day LEDs. I can showcase LED light after LED light that are, pardon the pun, light years ahead of the harmful, cheap, laser beam LEDs that are being poured over the heads of millions. The world’s citizens have been fed false information that they are helping the planet by going “green” (they are not) and that they are now “safe from criminals” (they are not). This whole smart lighting debacle is scamming the public and I am going to bet everyone is getting kickbacks. I know for a fact that Chicago has received millions from Commonwealth Edison. Lighting Manufacturers are also giving away 4000K LED lights for free to small businesses and small towns because they know they have to get rid of them. When you speak of outdated lighting, BRAWLs must be included in your statement.

    You asked, “Do the people who complain about “BRAWLs” (because not all LEDs are created equal) suggest technically correct suggestions or are they just against the LED lighting and making frivolous and fraudulent allegations and claims?” The answer is, no, we do not make suggestions because we are not lighting technicians. But…we have access to those who are and such experts do make correct suggestions. In my ‘little’ Group we have many experts who know exactly what they are doing. They know more than me and they know more than you.

    Is it frivolous that human beings feel their retinas being burnt into the back of their skulls because of the light daggers emitted from LED streetlights and headlights? Not to me. Not to our 700+ Group Members or to the 12K individuals who have signed our Change.Org Petition “Ban Blinding Headlights and Save Lives!”. Our numbers are growing every day and so are the experts who spend all their waking hours striving to correct this most serious ecological problem.

    You claim you have a PowerPoint presentation. Everyone knows that the light emitted from LEDs are extremely difficult to capture on film. Depending on the exposure one can make these lights look however they want to make them look. It takes a very expensive light meter to measure the kind of brightness these LEDs emit. I am not interested in your PP presentation. I am interested in scientific evidence.

    You say that not one of the subject lights shed any light on the front of the subject residences. That is called the “Zebra Effect”, extremely bright light that cuts off sharply into extreme darkness. But, Dr. Abraham, did you enter those residences? How do you know that from the inside these light bombs don’t create trespass? I have hundreds of photos from the interior of homes where the LEDs look like a stagnant supernova is hovering in front of their property. This is not okay. Everyone has the right to the peaceful enjoyment of their own home. By the way, what kind of LED do you have directly in front of your house? You told me you cannot tolerate LED headlights…could you tolerate Judith Youngblood’s LED in your front yard? I could not, but I have to because I have a similar LED in front of my front window. Hence the drawn curtains at night.

    Your last paragraph insulting Ms. Youngblood’s Attorney makes you sound defensive and a little bit fearful. You do not want others to join her and you are scared to death they will. Indeed, millions will follow after Judith Youngblood and her brave neighbor. BRAWLs are the next asbestos, lead and second hand smoke public health crisis. Instead of fighting these good people, you and Honorable Mayor Bral (odd coincidence) of Great Neck should join Judith in saving your own health and the health of ALL your Constituents, including the useless birds you care nothing about.

  8. This is the letter I received from the author:

    Your stupid non-technical statements are utter nonsense and you are too inept to have any opinion. The members of the group you were kicked out of also agreed!!

    Dr. C. J. Abraham
    PhD, JD, P.E.,DFE,
    FRSC, FTI, IH, DEE, BCEE
    Technical Director
    Scientific Advisory Services, LTD.
    www. Scientificadvisory.com

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