Thousands of San Anselmo and Fairfax commuters dealt with a closed major thoroughfare and spent the night in the dark when they got home Friday after a truck crashed into a utility pole on Sir Francis Drake Blvd., leaving the downed pole hanging over traffic.
The incident occurred at about 6:45 p.m. when a Mitsubishi Fuso truck crashed into a utility pole while heading westbound in the 1500 block of Sir Francis Drake, according to San Anselmo Police Capt. Sethi Jervan. The driver was not injured, Jervan said. The pole broke at the base but did not fall into the road. It was suspended above it, being held up by a tree and other power lines, Jervan said.
That fact caused police to shut down Sir Francis Drake immediately after the incident in both directions between Butterfield Rd. and San Anselmo Ave., with traffic being diverted to Center Blvd. and side streets, Jervan said.
Although power was restored at 4:03 a.m. Saturday to all Pacific Gas & Electric customers who lost it, Sir Francis Drake didn't re-open until around 1 p.m., Jervan said, as PG&E crews continued to work on the utility pole and the power lines around it.
The crash knocked out power to nearly 4,300 PG&E customers, according to PG&E spokesperson Jana Morris.
Crews were on the scene quickly to replace the pole and the equipment at the top of it, according to Morris. Power was restored gradually, reducing the number of customers without power to 3,400 by 8 p.m., 1,521 by 8:30 p.m. and 1,400 by 10 p.m., Morris said.
“When a vehicle comes in contact with a utility pole, the extent of the damage can vary,” Morris said. “In this case, power lines came down and equipment was damaged and had to be replaced. That work can take a while.”
Alcohol did not play a role in the incident, Jervan said.