Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Dump truck takes out poles and wires

Nearly 700 customers lose power Friday morning


By TERRY SMITH
Express Staff Writer

Nearly 700 Idaho Power customers were without electricity for about an hour Friday morning after a dump truck knocked down poles and lines near the Carey Transfer Station.

The Blaine County Sheriff's Office reported Monday that the mishap occurred at about 9:45 a.m. at the top of Queens Crown summit west of Carey.

"The driver of the truck was offloading some stuff and neglected to lower the bed," said sheriff's spokesman Lt. Jay Davis. "He drove off and hit the lines, snapping two power poles and bringing the wires down on the truck."

Davis said the truck driver, 38-year-old Kingston Ray West, of Hailey, jumped from the truck after hitting the wires and was uninjured, but emergency personnel treated the wires as live until an Idaho Power crew arrived.

Idaho Power spokesman Dennis Lopez said a breaker switch likely tripped when the mishap occurred, but it's best to treat downed lines as live anyway.

"In any case, we always caution anyone that those wires are hot and they should only be removed by company employees," Lopez said.

He said 678 customers in the Carey, Little Wood Reservoir and Bellevue areas were without power for about an hour.

Davis said the truck, owned by Katco Excavation in Hailey, dumped a load of garbage hauled from Golden Eagle Ranch in Mid Valley prior to hitting the power lines.

He said West was cited for inattentive driving

Lopez said Idaho Power was still trying to determine monetary damages on Monday.




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