Should We Install a Solar-Powered Floodlight to Deter Illegal Dumping on Bernal Hill?

So… what was the outcome of that recent meeting about strategies to deter illegal dumping on Bernal Hill? District 9 Supervisor David Campos has a proposal, and he’d like your feedback:

Bernal Heights Residents. At the community meeting I held a couple weeks ago with representatives from the Department of Recreation & Parks, we decided that the best and most cost effective strategy to deter further illegal dumping on Bernal Hill is to install a solar power light at the site of the dumpings. I am attaching a picture of the lamp so you can see what it would look like. Please let us know if you have any issues with this solution by contacting Hillary Ronen in my office at Thanks for participating in the decision making process!

Bernalwood used the photo provided by Supervisor Campos to create the absurdist illustration shown above. It shows what the actual floodlight would look like (if it took steroids and grew to about 10x its actual size). Don’t take the photo too literally. The point being, we’d get a light shaped kind of like that, somewhere kind of around there, to help keep the baddie illegal dumping people away, and possibly prevent actual scenes like this:

Do you like the idea? Should The City go ahead and install a solar-powered light? Feel free to email Supervisor Campos’s staff, or discuss here, in the comments.

PHOTOS: Telstar Logistics

28 thoughts on “Should We Install a Solar-Powered Floodlight to Deter Illegal Dumping on Bernal Hill?

  1. I don’t think that’s a good idea. Why should we trade an occasional eyesore in the form of illegal dumping for a permanent eyesore in the form of that giant streetlight?

  2. How is a street lamp an eyesore? I think the towers, fencing and everything else at the top of the hill is much more of an eyesore. If a little light can be a big deterrent, I say go for it!

  3. I *hate* this idea. I walk my dog through that part of the park most nights and I think this would be useless, unwanted light pollution. Totally ineffective way to treat a minor problem.

    They used to have an extremely annoying floodlight atop the hill and it was just awful. Total light pollution. I’m happy that is gone and extinguished. Please, please lets not pollute the park this this monstrosity.

    I’d rather see a surveillance camera, possibly motion sensitive than this obtrusive nuisance.

  4. Did anyone go to the meeting? I’m sure someone must have brought up the idea of video surveillance. Why was this light considered to be a better idea than video? Anyone know?

  5. this is not a “minor” problem. it happened at least 4 times and it’s sickening. a light would be a fine addition and would probably have some benefit re dumping. now about the hideous antenna array and ridiculous off-limits-to-public area atop the hill… let’s take it back.

  6. one other thing: a neighbor captured the perpetrators on video, and the culprit’s phone # was clearly visible. was any justice handed down? I heard there was a fine administered, but a flogging seems more appropriate.

    • This is a touchy issue. Yes, there is video of one of the perps, with a phone # clearly visible. However, DA’s office has been moving very slowly. As of last week, I was told that they need actual humans to prosecute, not trucks. In other words, there are no faces or evidence that can be connected to specific people associated with the incident. I’m very tempted to just post the pictures and let the chips fall where they will.

      • Does anyone know if it’s possible to levy a fine or penalty against the corporation listed on the side of the truck? Or are we truly at the point where corporations are entirely free of any criminal culpability?

      • Also: My personal opinion is that it’s perfectly acceptable to post the video. If the city won’t (hasn’t already) penalized them, then people should at least have the choice to not patronise their business.

  7. yes, light would be a deterrent and also help with the crosswalk there, cars speeding on folsom. just make sure someone specs a cutoff shade so light doesn’t go into neighbor homes.

  8. Perhaps if a safe was suspended from said light, to smash unwitting culprits? Then you wouldn’t even need to have the light function… only the smashing mechanism would be needed.

  9. I agree that it was pretty terrible when people were leaving piles of trash. But that hasn’t happened for months. Maybe the signs are adequate deterrents, maybe the word has gotten out that there are neighbors who provide video footage the authorities, maybe it’s something else. But the problem seems to have gone away, so let’s stop worrying about this since no additional deterrent seems to be necessary at this point.

  10. Ugh. The light will do nothing to deter anything. It just provides better lighting for anyone dumping junk.

    In my 24 years of living here, dumping in the park has been so infrequent. It is not a serious problem. Idiots occasionally dump junk. DPW then cleans up the mess. BFD.

  11. I agree that a video camera and sign would be a better solution than the light and think we absolutely should post the video! Additionally, we should all call the company listed on the truck to tell them that we have video of them and suggest they ‘train’ their employees not to illegally dump there. I’m pretty sure that would at least take care of one ‘bad company.’

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