Lakewood's LED traffic lights don't give off heat, stay snow covered

LAKEWOOD, Ohio - New LED traffic lights save cities a lot of money because they use less energy, but could pose a safety risk in cold weather.

The old incandescent traffic lights would put off heat close to 90 degrees and melted snow, preventing traffic lights from becoming clogged with snow.

The LED lights are so cool that snow sticks to the lights, making it tough to see if they're red, green or yellow.

Dozens of cities in northern Ohio have switched to the LED's including Lakewood, where the city saves $25,000 a year.

Joe Beno, Director of Public works, said there have been no accidents in Lakewood that he knows of that have been clamed on snow-covered LED traffic lights. He advised drivers to slow down in wintry weather.

Beno said snow-clogged traffic lights should be treated like a four-way stop, just as drivers would during a power outage.

In just a few minutes Friday afternoon, NewsChannel5's Paul Kiska saw several drivers having trouble being able to notice what color the traffic light was showing, One driver drove right through a snow-covered red light.

If you know of any crashes related to snow-clogged LED traffic lights, please email

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