HONOLULU (KHON2) — A traffic light pole came crashing down on Kapiolani Boulevard on Tuesday, barely missing some oncoming cars. The city now says inspections will be done more frequently as a precaution.

Dash cam video of the pole coming down in slow motion shows just how close it came to landing on the SUV, which wound up running over the traffic light. Kenton Chun was stopped at the traffic light when he saw it happen.

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Video courtesy: Kenton Chun

“Just kind of took it all in and realized how lucky everyone was, that it could’ve been a whole lot worse,” he said.

It happened around 7:30 in the morning at a busy intersection, Kapiolani Boulevard and Ward Avenue. All eastbound lanes were shut down causing a traffic jam.

Some of the folks we spoke with are now worried that there could be other traffic light posts coming down. Windy conditions are expected for at least a couple more days.

First responders at the scene of a vehicle accident on N. Nimitz Highway on Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2023.
First responders at the scene of a vehicle accident on N. Nimitz Highway on Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2023.

“I think we should be proactive, grace to God nobody was hurt, but that’s this one time we’ve been warned, kind of, so I think absolutely, we need to do something about this,” said area resident, Corey Haveman.

Construction Engineer Lance Luke said corrosion at the base of the pole and strong winds are likely to blame. He said regular inspection should help prevent it from happening.

“Things like this when I see it, could’ve been prevented. All the stuff is preventable because it’s surface corrosion,” he said.

He added that because it’s on the surface, the corrosion should be easy to spot.

“This would have been readily observable to somebody that was supposed to be inspecting. So I’m thinking that there should be inspections on all of these. But if they leave it like that and it’s not inspected then that’s what we’re gonna have, it’s like accidents waiting to happen,” said Luke.

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We asked the city how old the pole was and how often they are inspected. A spokesman said it was about 25 years old and they’re inspected annually. He added that the older poles in Honolulu will be inspected more frequently.