Warning signal tied to sun's strength

The new signal installed on Highway 395 near the Town of Gardnerville maintenance facility resembles a traffic light, but what it does is warn people of the sun's ultraviolet radiation.

The St. Gall Knights of Columbus Immaculate Heart of Mary Council No. 12845 paid for the UV Warning Signal that measures how much sun protection you need to be outdoors.

The light ranges from low green that means it's safe outside with proper sun protection to violet that indicates it is unsafe to be outside.

Mike Mullins said the council learned of the project through Skin Cancer Awareness Foundation president Bill Barth who lives in the Johnson Lane area.

"We thought it sounded like something great for the Knights to get involved with," Mullins said.

The organization approached Gardnerville Town Manager Jim Park who suggested the warning signal be posted at the town maintenance yard on Highway 395 near Valley Crescent Shopping Center.

"We thought it was so very important for our youth," Mullins said. "It's better to donate to prevention awareness than for treatment later."

The message resonated with members of the Knights council.

"Since we've been involved with this, just in our Knights group, 15 or 20 of us are going to dermatologists and being treated," he said.

Mullins said the signal is facing north so motorists won't confuse it with a traffic light.

They hope to install a warning signal in Minden. The device costs $2,195.

Since the Knights council formed in 2001, Mullins said the organization has contributed more than $80,000 to local charities, mostly raised from bingo games at St. Gall Pastoral Center.


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