Car crash causes power outage in South Berkeley

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A car crash that brought down an electrical pole caused a power outage in South Berkeley on Thursday night.

Although as of about 10:30 a.m. Friday power was restored in the majority of the affected area, according to the Pacific Gas and Electric Company’s outage map, 58 customers are still being affected. Power is estimated to be completely restored at around 8 p.m. on Friday.

At about 10:30 p.m. Thursday, the outage area spanned approximately from San Pablo Avenue to California Street and from Carleton Street to Prince Street, affecting 1,255 customers, according to the outage map.

Berkeley police got a call about 8:37 p.m. regarding a car that had crashed into a wooden electrical pole and into several parked cars. Berkeley Police Department Lt. Dan Montgomery said the driver — a man in his early 20s — fled the car without any pants on.

Police are investigating whether the man was driving under the influence, Montgomery said. He was taken into custody and then checked into a hospital for scratches and abrasions.

“We have to make sure he’s OK,” Montgomery said.

After the crash, PG&E arrived to neutralize any live, potentially dangerous power lines and is now working to restore power. As of 10 p.m., police officers were blocking off traffic by 1100 Ward St.— at the intersection of Ward Street and San Pablo Avenue — where the crash took place.

Montgomery estimated that power would be restored about midnight.

Contact Suhauna Hussain at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @suhaunah.