NUEVO: Officials searching for man who fled after crashing into SCE pole, power box

NUEVO — Officials are searching for a driver who fled the scene after plowing in a power pole, Thursday evening, Dec. 14. The impact sheared the power pole at its base and sent it and a transformer crashing onto a residential property. A power box was also destroyed in the crash that happened in the area of Central Avenue and Menifee Road in Nuevo.

A power pole and transformer were knocked down onto a residential property by a hit and run driver. A power box was also destroyed, knocking out power to the surrounding neighborhoods. William Hayes photo

Power in the surrounding neighborhoods was knocked out and some areas remained affected for several hours after the crash, while Southern California Edison crews worked to replace the damaged lines, pole and power box.

California Highway Patrol and other emergency first responders were dispatched to the area about 6:30 p.m., after several people called 911 to report a vehicle that had smashed into and knocked down a power pole.

Callers advised emergency dispatchers that after crashing into the power pole the driver fled the scene on foot. He was described as a Hispanic male adult with heavy build.

Callers also advised dispatchers that power had been knocked out throughout the surrounding neighborhoods.

When officials arrived they found a black Honda sedan with heavy front-end damage. The vehicle’s steering column had been damaged and the car had been hot-wired.

Investigating officers are working to determine if the car was stolen or was possibly recently recovered stolen vehicle.

Damage to the car’s steering column and dashboard indicated the sedan was possibly stolen or was a recently recovered stolen vehicle. William Hayes photo

Evidence at the scene indicated the driver was not wearing a seat belt and had possibly struck his head on the vehicle’s wind shield when he crashed into the power pole.

The power pole the driver knocked down had fallen onto a residential property and damaged several sections of fencing. Wires were dangling onto two properties, several trees and near a half-dozen vehicles.

SCE was summoned to the scene to de-energize the downed power lines and restore power to the neighborhood.

When SCE workers responded they immediately began the process of rendering the power lines safe so they could be replaced.

Other than the hit and run driver, whose injuries are not yet known, there were no reported injuries related to this accident.

Anyone with information regarding the identity of the driver is encouraged to contact CHP at (951) 769-2000. Callers can remain anonymous.

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Trevor Montgomery, who recently moved from Riverside County to Shasta County, runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes for Riverside County based newspapers Valley News, The Valley Chronicle and Anza Valley Outlook as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident.

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations, including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center and Lake Elsinore Station, along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 27 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and has 13 children and 14 grandchildren.

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