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Distracted Driver Topples Power Pole, Teeters Two More, Sparks Fire – Power Out Briefly In Martinez Friday

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Photo: File

A driver’s momentary distraction set off a chain reaction of unintended consequences near Arnold Drive in Martinez Friday: her car toppling power poles – the downed power lines touching off two small grass fires that blacked out dozens of nearby homes.

Police and firefighters responded to 1340 Arnold Drive at 11:53 a.m. Friday in response to a call of a car into a power pole and live wires down and sparking on the ground.

The woman driving the car told police she took her eyes off the road for a second and plowed into three poles – shearing one and tilting two others.

About 1,500 people living in the area lost power, with PG&E crews restoring power to homes through the course of the afternoon. Arnold Drive was closed in both directions while the utility crews worked.

The driver complained of pain but declined a trip to the hospital. Police said it did not appear that alcohol or drugs played a role in the crash.

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9 COMMENTS

  1. Who gets the bill in cases like this? If responsibility can be determined, ie, “driver took eyes off road,” does said driver pay any of the financial cost of pole replacement, loss of power, fire department time, damage to structures if any? Or is it just a write off with the county — or us actually — picking up the tab?

  2. Was she looking down at her cell phone???
    She was very lucky because hitting trees and telephone poles is often fatal.

  3. Some people drive with a driving restriction, like “glasses required”. Might I recommend, “nothing bigger than a Yugo” for this “distracted driver”. My god woman, you could have killed someone.

  4. Hope whatever she was doing was important enough to justify all the damage. Glad no one was hurt and agree with david – she could have killed someone.

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