Home NEWS Police/Fire Driver Strays On Pleasant Hill Road Thursday – Splinters Power Poles, Blacks...

Driver Strays On Pleasant Hill Road Thursday – Splinters Power Poles, Blacks Out Neighborhood

Photo: Kelly Schultz

Walnut Creek police are investigating a single car crash on Pleasant Hill Road in front of the Palos Verdes mall after the driver smashed through a series of power poles, knocking out power to the surrounding neighborhood.

About 2,000 people were still without power at about 3:20 p.m., with readers saying their lights flickered and died soon after they heard the crash at about 2:20 p.m.

Police have closed the road in both directions to enable PG&E crews to removed the splintered poles and to restring live power lines brought down in the crash.

No injuries were reported, though neighbors said the driver of the involved Yukon was being interviewed by police. A Walnut Creek police spokesperson said later the police took no action against the driver as nothing illegal had occurred to cause the crash.

Neighbors in the immediate area of the crash and frequent patrons of the busy mall reported traffic restrictions into Friday morning as utility workers sought to remove the splintered poles, replace them and restring the necessary wiring.


  1. That’s a lot of damage to the vehicle. I’m glad no one was injured. Isn’t Palos Verdes Mall in WC, not PH? Or did he start out in PH and stray into WC?

  2. How distracted do you have to be to roll through three power poles? Was this a medical event while behind the wheel or something else?

  3. According to Kelly on Facebook – she was texting.

    There are 2.5 car million car accidents in the US annually. 1.6 million involve cell phones. That’s 64%. 1 in 4 involve texting.

    Ladies – drive with you cell phone in your purse, and put your purse in the back seat, or if you’re afraid you’ll reach for it – put your purse in the trunk.

    Gentlemen- put your cell phone in the glove box and lock it.

    Any call or text can wait. Nothing (or nobody) is that important.

    Or you can get rid of your cell phones like we did, including our young adult sons and daughter.

    If you insist on owning a cell phone – please be responsible. Thank you.

  4. News24/680… Kelly was quoted on Claycord.com (Facebook) that she “lives three blocks away and she spoke with an officer, and the officer told her the driver was texting.”

    I can’t speak for Kelly (who also sent pictures to the media), but if I posted something like that online, I would tell the truth or say nothing. If she was at the scene to take pictures, I believe an officer might tell a layperson a driver was texting. Especially a concerned neighbor. Officers are human, and concerned neighbors aren’t professionals – they’re just neighbors.

    I didn’t take this from your facebook… it was Claycord.com. I would never post the above unless I read “spoke with an officer.”

    I will give Kelly the benefit of the doubt she spoke with an officer, and he told her the truth.

    Do they cite or arrest for texting, or do they let the driver off since they “didn’t see it happen?” And they feel bad that the driver has “suffered enough?”

    Only the driver knows for sure whether he or she was texting…

    • @Danielle – We get it. Kelly was good enough to contact us and respond with some (very dramatic) pictures of the accident scene. We pointedly asked law enforcement about arrests/cites after hearing the whiff of an allegation regarding texting while driving. We were told no action was taken because no thing illegal had occurred and we left it there, though the evidence plastered on the front of that SUV and along the roadway suggests that whomever was behind the wheel was either 1.) asleep, 2.) in the midst of a medical event e.g. heart attack (which we have seen happen lately), and 3.) otherwise distracted in some manner. The bottom line is it’s not our call to make and we sure wish the Lurking LEOs around here would pipe up but unless a direct tie can be made to texting and the resulting accident we don’t think much can be done. And there’s a lot left to “officer discretion,” as you point out. On the other hand, if we’d been skippering that monster at the time of the crash, our luck would see us pulled from the wreckage by a mob of angry neighbors (while Kelly filmed us), severely thrashed and marched into the freezer at Lunardis to await the arrival of police. But that’s just the way our luck runs! It does amaze us how some folks just seem to “walk away.”

  5. Get rid of our cell phones? 90% of our communication with our (college aged) kids is via cell phone. Actually— now that you mention it……

  6. I mean you have to wonder how that conversation was going if that person was texting while plowing through three power poles.

  7. I’m glad they’re okay but every time I hear or see one of these reports I ask myself how it happened in the first place. And then it happens again the next day. If he or she was texting I hope it was worth it.

  8. @Danielle- The article says on Pleasant Hill Road, which goes through Lafayette and Walnut Creek and then makes a left turn at Camino Verde and continues as Pleasant Hill Road until it turns in to Alhambra in Martinez.

    Palos Verdes Mall is in WC

  9. News24/680…if I worked at Lunardis, I’d let you hang out in the meat locker to cool you off, and send you home with “free meat and a bottle of wine.”

    Chris… you wouldn’t believe the “quality of conversation” since the decrease in technology. The “joy of unavailability.”

    Baby… thank you. I might have read the headline wrong. I’m not getting any younger, and I’m supposed to be working. This offsets my stressful gig…

  10. I wasn’t there but it would seem to me that if a police officer determined someone was texting shortly before having a serious accident that a citation would be in order. Am I wrong?

  11. Giving up one’s cell phone certainly doesn’t correlate to staying off the web. It does, however, reduce the likelihood of an accident if you’re prone to using it while driving.

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