City to protect street signs from graffiti

Published: Aug. 2, 2010 at 11:17 PM HST|Updated: Aug. 2, 2010 at 11:38 PM HST
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Jack Kemfer
Jack Kemfer
Kirk Caldwell
Kirk Caldwell

By Brooks Baehr - bio | email

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The City and County of Honolulu announced Monday it will begin using a transparent protective film on city street signs to help guard against graffiti. Graffiti can easily be wiped from treated signs.

The city estimates it replaces about 300 signs every month because they have been covered with graffiti that cannot be removed. The city said Monday the average replacement cost is $360 and that it spends roughly $100,000 a month replacing signs damaged by graffiti.

"If I try to use the product that's provided or available, to eradicate that, we really erase the sign, so it's not effective," said Jack Kemfer.

Applying the protective film will be much more affordable. For example, it costs $13 to cover a stop sign with the new coating.

"Yes, it is about saving money, but more important it's about protecting the public and public safety. When you cannot read a sign properly you may not know if you should stop or yield or you may not know when the next bus comes, you could be waiting a long time," said Kirk Caldwell.

The city will only use the film on new signs and signs it erects to replace signs damaged by graffiti. It will not apply the film to all existing signs.

"I even did some testing myself... It was great. Real easy. It's real simple. It's faster than trying to paint it or remove it," said Kemfer.

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