Dangerous Advertising? Supergraphic Sign Overlooking Freeway Rips Loose in Wind Storm

Nine-story supergraphic sign alongside 405 freeway after last week's windstorm

When City Attorney Carmen Trutanich began cracking down on illegal supergraphic signs in L.A., his office cited public safety concerns that the huge vinyl and fabric signs wrapped around buildings could endanger motorists and pedestrians if their attachments failed due to high winds or some other cause.  But others, including attorneys for property owners charged with allowing those illegal signs, argued that those concerns were highly exaggerated and that high bail amounts set in several cases were unwarranted.

Those arguments were put forward despite evidence that the multi-story signs have broken loose in some cases, although no evidence of injuries or property damage has been put forward.  The latest example illustrated in the photo above came just last week, after a storm with gusty winds blew through the L.A. area.  The office building near LAX is less than 200 ft. from the heavily-trafficked 405 freeway, and one might reasonably ask what could have happened if the fabric of the sign had torn completely loose and blown out onto the freeway.

The sign is in Inglewood, just outside the L.A. city limits, and was erected through a revenue-sharing agreement with the Inglewood city council.  The sign owner is Michael McNeilly, owner of such companies as Skytag and Sky Posters, and the impresario responsible for the oversized statue of liberty images that were draped on buildings around L.A. last year.   For more, see:

Selling the Public Viewscape: Freeway Supergraphic Signs

Trojan Horse:  Skytag’s Michael McNeilly Promotes Billboard Tax in West Hollywood

Dennis Hathaway

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