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LIGHTS OUT! Coney Island Hospital dims blinding bulbs

Brooklyn Daily

The night light has been snuffed!

Neighbors of Coney Island Hospital say they can finally get some rest now that the Hurricane Sandy-battered facility has adjusted a blinding night light that for weeks had blasted blinding light through their windows.

“For the first time in a long while, I got a good night sleep last night,” said Ed Lane, who lives across the street from the urgent care center’s E. Sixth Street entrance near Shore Parkway.

The Sheepshead Bay medical center erected four, 20-foot-tall, gas-powered halogen lamps outside of its ad-hoc urgent care center, which was removed to E. Sixth Street following damage the hospital sustained by Hurricane Sandy, and earlier this week residents said the blinding lights were making them queasy.

“It’s extremely bright,” Lane told the Courier last week. “It almost makes you a little nauseous when you stare at them.”

A hospital spokesman said he was unaware the lights were a problem until informed by this newspaper, and couldn’t say when they would be removed. But he said the lights are not permanent, and a rejiggering of them could solve the problem.

“I suggested to the engineering people to knock out two of the four lights, and to reposition the lights to prevent any ambient light form going to E. Sixth Street and Shore Parkway,” said Robert Cooper.

The lights have now been angled away from nearby houses and towards the entrance of the urgent care center they were erected to illuminate, according to Lane.

“Everything is nice now, the lights are below the windows, and they’re aiming down at the parking lot where they belong,” he said. “Now people can see in the parking lot, not into my windows.”

The lights were erected about two weeks after the storm in order to provide a safe condition for patients coming and going from the hospital as they walked through the dividing parking lot, and to provide additional security for trailers filled with construction equipment that are left unattended during the night, according to Cooper.

Coney Island Hospital received extensive damage during Hurricane Sandy, suffering flooding in the basement and first-levels of ever building of the extensive, 371-bed medical facility, which now requires roughly $200 million worth of repairs, according to Alan Aviles, of the city’s Health and Hospitals Corporation, which manages the city-run facility.

Schumer said that he’s hopeful the House of Representatives will pass the bill giving the city $60 billion in federal aid — including $810 million to rebuild area hospitals — when it comes to the house floor next week, and that the hospital could see the money as soon as next month.

“If they vote for it on the 15th it could be on the president’s desk in about two and half weeks,” Schumer said. “And the way these programs are structured, it could make its way to the hospital pretty quickly after that.”

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at cmixson@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4514.

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