About 100 Rochester Public Utilities and MetroNet customers were without service for about two hours Wednesday following a crash involving a utility pole on 19th Street Northwest in Rochester.
Emergency responders with the Rochester Fire Department responded around 10:30 a.m. to the 3100 block of 19th Street Northwest for a report of a motor vehicle that had crashed into an energized utility power pole.
The car had hit the power pole head-on, and the pole and wires had fallen to the ground, according to the fire department. The female driver was removed from the car by bystanders prior to emergency responders arrival. She was taken to the Mayo Clinic Hospital-Saint Marys by ambulance.
RPU was called to the scene to assist with downed lines. The lines were determined to be “no longer energized” but were still considered potentially dangerous. Rochester police helped establish a “safe area” around the downed lines and a portion of 19th Street Northwest was shut down between Lourdes High School and the Rochester Athletic Club.
At 11:11 a.m., RPU reported 122 customers were without power. RPU reported that power was restored to all customers at 12:21 p.m.
“This incident had the potential to pose extreme danger to both the public and bystanders.
Whenever someone encounters a downed powerline it is essential to stay a safe distance away
and contact authorities immediately,” the fire department wrote in a news release. “Overhead power lines can carry as much as 500,000 volts. Touching one of the lines can provide a path for electricity to the ground and hurt or kill you. Assume all power lines are energized and dangerous and keep in mind that current can carry a distance of 50 to 100 feet from the downed line.”