KGUN 9 On Your SideNews


Traffic accident leaves mess most of day

Posted at 9:25 PM, Feb 08, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-09 20:49:48-05

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - A traffic accident on Mission Road Monday night left a mess on that major street most of the Tuesday.

A car hit a power pole about 8:30 Monday night.  It knocked out electricity to about three hundred customers.
Tucson Electric was able to get power back fairly fast for all but about 16 customers but the long-lasting trouble was the traffic as crews worked on repairs.

Tuesday afternoon was a better commute along Mission than the area had in the morning. In the morning all lanes were closed on Mission from Silverlake on the North to 36th on the South.
About 2pm Tuesday Tucson Police were able to open the southbound lanes.  But Mission at that time utility trucks kept Mission to one lane to the north.

About 24 thousand cars a day use the part of Mission Road affected by the wreck and the work to repair the damage. A lot of those drivers had to make U turns and figure a different way through.

Tucson Electric had about ten trucks and crews on the job repairing the damage from a driver smashing into the pole near Mission and San Antonio Drive.

One hit affected many more poles.  The impact tugged on the power lines as if someone pulled on a rope and did enough damage to affect a long line of poles on Mission and across the street.

TEP had to replace at least three poles but take the time first to make sure digging new holes didn't knock out any other utilities.

Joe Barrios of TEP says:"They essentially have to come out and mark where their underground equipment is located so that when we dig holes for our new poles we don't want to strike any of their equipment or cause further damage."

Emergency crews were on the job less than a half hour after the car hit the pole Monday night.  But it was such a big job, it was about two Tuesday afternoon before workers were far enough along to open Mission Road southbound, and one lane of Mission headed North.

The driver did survive that accident.  

With most utility pole damage after TEP finishes there is work for other utilities to do.  When you look at a utility pole the upper wires are usually electricity while the lower wires are other utilities like phone and cable and some of those wires need some work too.