This story was updated at 9:13 p.m. Nov. 18, 2023 with information on an arrest.
A pickup crashed into a power pole in the early morning hours Saturday to send a power line down across Main Street, Philomath Fire and Rescue reported. The situation forced the closure of Main Street for a couple of hours while responders worked to clear the scene.
The motorist, a 51-year-old Philomath man, suffered minor injuries and was transported to Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center. He was later arrested by the Philomath Police Department on a misdemeanor charge of driving under the influence of intoxicants with a blood alcohol content of .20 or above.
Police and emergency personnel were dispatched at 2:48 a.m. to the crash at Main Street and Newton Street to find the pole had fallen onto the vehicle. The man driving was able to get out and was assessed by a Philomath Fire and Rescue crew before he was taken to the hospital by a Corvallis Fire ambulance.
An Oregon Department of Transportation crew worked to help clear the roadway.
“Crews waited for the arrival of Pacific Power but after 90 minutes, ODOT personnel used a chainsaw to cut up the power pole for removal off the vehicle aided by PFR personnel,” said Deputy Fire Chief Rich Saalsaa, who acted as incident commander. “Once the line was cleared from the roadway and the vehicle towed, the highway was reopened.”
Benton County Sheriff’s Office was also at the scene with Philomath Police to investigate. The possible cause of the crash was not immediately available. Fire and Rescue’s response included an engine with three personnel and a volunteer firefighter in addition to the deputy fire chief.