By Ron Matz

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The heat wave has taken its toll in many ways across Baltimore.  If you’re one of the thousands of motorists who travel the JFX every day, you may have noticed something unusual.

Ron Matz reports the heat may have done a “number” to one of Baltimore’s most famous landmarks.

It’s stuck on 99.  The Pepsi sign has been showing that number for several days. It’s possible Baltimore’s searing heat is taking its toll.

“The Pepsi sign looks kind of funny.  It’s not doing anything.  I think the heat did a number on it,” said Raymond Nichols, Hampden. “I’m hanging in there in the heat.  You better drink a lot of fluids and a lot of water.”

At a construction site next to the plant, workers are taking notice.

“It’s been like that since last Thursday.  It says 99 and hasn’t moved a bit,” said Dave Fitzgerald, who works at a construction site nearby. “Well, I think the heat fried it.  Obviously it’s stuck. It hasn’t moved an inch.”

The sign is more than 40 years old. Four years ago it underwent repairs, but hasn’t seen conditions like these in a long time.

“I usually drive by the sign three or four times a day.  It looks like the tote board is a little out of order.  I guess it burned out from all the heat,” said Tom Manard, truck driver from Parkville. “You can see the top of it may have burned out from the sun.”

A Pepsi spokesperson tells Eyewitness News they’re working on the famous sign and hope to have it repaired shortly.

The Pepsi plant opened in Baltimore in 1968. The landmark time and temperature sign went up one year later.


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