A downed utility pole has West Westfield Avenue between Locust Street and Gordon Street closed in both directions.
Several traffic lights in the area are out while several businesses and residences are without power. Utility crews are on the scene.
Resident Scott Mackie, who lives on Westfield Avenue, heard the collision, commenting, “I ran out to check on my car to see what happened.”
“I was driving on Westfield Avenue when it happened,” witness Ryan McKraken recounted, “I was in the right lane and I just passed over Locust street. A white truck that was parked in front of the [The Castle] pulled out like it was going to take off . . . at that moment, I heard a loud snap then saw the utility pole lean towards the street.”
Mr. McKraken stated that a bright flash was followed by blue flashes that started right when the pole tipped over. Coming to a stop, he saw the lines snap and fall into the street with the transformers that were on that pole beginning to leak fluid when they hit the ground. He continued, “The wires were on top of the truck jumping ground letting off sparks. Traffic stopped then I had to make a u-turn . . . Some people even drove under and over the wires to pass. I was just happy it didn’t fall on me.”
Power has been restored but HAZMAT remains on-scene waiting for a contractor to complete clean-up of the area. Eastbound traffic is scheduled to open by 6 p.m. tonight.
(Photograph courtesy of RJ Kuterka)