Woman who hit power box at Kimball Junction might have been drunk
July 14, 2009
Alcohol might have factored into a car crash at Kimball Junction, which left thousands in the Snyderville Basin without lights Saturday night.
A 45-year-old woman from the Park City area lost control of her car traveling west at roughly 6545 N. Landmark Drive, Summit County Sheriff’s Office Detective Ron Bridge said.
"She rolled her car and landed on top of a power box," Bridge explained in a telephone interview.
The driver appeared to be under the influence of alcohol, Bridge said.
"During the medical evaluation in the ambulance the deputies were able to smell the odor of alcohol, the female stated she had, in fact, consumed alcohol and there was the smell of alcohol coming from her breath," he said.
The woman will be cited for suspicion of driving under the influence, Bridge said.
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Injuries she suffered in the crash were not life threatening, he said, adding that an ambulance transported her to a Wasatch Front hospital.
Generally, The Park Record does not print the names of suspects until formal charges are filed.
The single-vehicle crash required firefighters extricate the woman from the car, Park City Fire District Battalion Chief Ray Huntzinger said.
"The patient was trapped in the car and the engine company had to force entry," Huntzinger explained.
On arrival, crews extinguished a fire in the damaged electrical box, he said.
"It was probably a fairly complex scene with the possible high-voltage electricity and the extrication," Huntzinger said. "They had to make sure they were clear of possible live electrical wires."
Meanwhile, the outage affected mostly electrical customers in the Snyderville Basin area, Rocky Mountain Power spokesman Jeff Hymas said.
The outage occurred at about 8 p.m. and crews were beginning to restore power to customers by about 9:38 p.m., Hymas explained.
Throughout the night, about 1,000 customers in mainly Jeremy Ranch were without power until crews fully restored electricity at about 6:34 a.m., Hymas said.
"That’s a relatively large outage for a vehicle accident," Hymas said. "The size of the outage in those situations is determined by the extent of the damage."
The electrical box the vehicle hit contains equipment used to reroute power in the event of an electrical outage, Hymas explained.
The box simply couldn’t sustain the impact of the car crashing into it, he said.
Meanwhile, the outage prompted some guests at the Hampton Inn and Suites, at 6609 N. Landmark Drive, to check out.
Without power for nearly three hours, the hotel lost money, said Melissa Averett, general manager of the Hampton Inn and Suites.
"Our signage and our main lighting were not on," Averett said in a telephone interview. "Without power, people would walk in and go, ‘Oh, never mind.’"
There were quite a few customers Saturday at the Crocs store when the business at 6699 Landmark Drive went dark.
"Since it was so late, it was just too difficult to do business when it’s that dark, so we had to close the store," Crocs employee Bobbie Susaeta said. "We ran the store temporally with no power and just had people trying to pick things out. But it’s hard to control when you only have a couple employees and it’s really dark."
During the power outage she estimates the store lost from $500 to $1000 in business.