Highway vandalism costs thousands in tax payer money

Vandals take another hit at highway signs

KANSAS CITY, Kan. - A vandalized exit sign on I-35 South in Kansas City will cost thousands of tax payer dollars to fix.

The tagged sign on exit 234 near Rainbow Blvd will cost $1,500 to repair. Last summer, it cost KDOT $6,500 to repair a set of signs near Southwest Boulevard and 37th Street. 

Three months later, the same signs were vandalized costing another $1500.  Plus, it takes 10 people and hours to fix.

"It gets frustrating,” Rick Looper said, a highway maintenance supervisor for KDOT, “it’s like we’ve got to go cover this up again you know we have to take our time of our day that's priority and deal with these issues."

The ladder and catwalk crews use to get up to the signs were removed in spots like 37th Street, but they remain on exit 234, the latest sign to get tagged.  

Looper blames bad weather and timing for not having them removed sooner. 

“We’ve just got to make sure we keep our impact to the public very minimal,” he said.

With more than 130,000 passing underneath the signs every day, Looper is certain someone has seen the vandals in action.

“And they can kind of you know let somebody known that they’ve seen them do this and maybe make them accountable."

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