Morgan City police say woman’s pickup hits pole, blows transformer causing outage
MORGAN CITY, La. — A 60-year-old Morgan City woman was arrested by police Monday for hit and run driving and careless operation after her pickup truck struck a utility pole causing a transformer to blow up and catch on fire near Shoney’s Restaurant and Taco Bell in Morgan City.
Debra S. Romero, of Third Street, was arrested at 11:14 a.m. Monday. Police responded to a call about a hit and run accident in the area of Shoney’s Restaurant, according to police. Police discovered that a vehicle had struck a guide wire to a utility pole causing damage to the vehicle, the pole and some electrical services in the area. Officers investigating the crash found out the identity of the driver of the vehicle.
Officers located the driver and interviewed Romero. She was taken to jail and then released on bail.
When the car hit the pole, it caused the transformer at Taco Bell to blow up and catch fire causing the circuit to go down, said city utilities director Bill Cefalu. The circuit that went down included the areas along Railroad Avenue down Ditch Avenue to U.S. 90 including Brashear Avenue and Front Street.
The Morgan City Fire Department responded to the transformer fire at Greenwood Street with eight firefighters at 10:30 a.m. and extinguished the fire, returning to the station by 11:30 a.m., said Fire Chief Morris Price. No injuries were reported as a result of the fire, he said.
Power was restored to the circuit within an hour, Cefalu said.
City utility workers then changed out the transformers at Taco Bell after the circuit was back on. Two other transformers also got burnt when the vehicle hit the pole, he said.
Taco Bell’s power was back on by 7 p.m.
“They worked on that most of the day. I don’t think they had Taco Bell back on until about 6, 7 o’clock that night,” Cefalu said.