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Traffic lights knocked out by storm
McMinnville Public Works employees worked into the night Tuesday to repair traffic signals like this one at the intersection of Old Smithville Highway and the bypass.

Tuesday night’s storm gave a green light to traffic trouble around McMinnville as 11 traffic lights were knocked out of action.
Two of those traffic signals, located on the bypass in front of Walmart, were sent sailing hundreds of feet down the road and were found near the start of the Lowe’s property, according to Public Works assistant director Brad Hennessee.
The lack of traffic signals meant police officers had to direct traffic at several intersections along the bypass as lights were either not working or were sent crashing to the pavement by high winds and were destroyed.
Hennessee said officers were used to direct traffic until Wednesday morning. He said all impacted intersections had operational traffic signals by Wednesday afternoon, except the one in front of Three Star Mall. That was working by Thursday morning, he said.
“We had to shift some traffic signals around to make sure we had working signals at every intersection,” said Hennessee.
Because 11 traffic signals were knocked out by one storm, he said Public Works didn’t have that many backups in stock.
The storm will be costly from a traffic signal perspective alone. The five-headed traffic signals cost around $2,500, while the three-headed signals cost between $1,800 and $2,000.
In addition to scurrying around to repair traffic signals, city crews removed 28 trees from roadways.