Power lines fall across interstate, shutting down traffic after - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Power lines fall across interstate, shutting down traffic after nearby crash

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: Facebook viewer, James Prince Source: Facebook viewer, James Prince
RIDGELAND, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Power lines fell across I-55 in Ridgeland Tuesday, shutting down traffic at rush hour and causing major headaches for motorists traveling in both directions.

Traffic reopened on both lanes of the interstate around 7:45 p.m.

It was closed for nearly three hours following a one vehicle crash that took down power lines, startled motorists and left live wires on the roadway.

The crash took out power lines and shut off electricity to businesses in Ridgeland just after five o'clock.

It occurred when a gray Chevy HHR hit a utility pole, taking down power lines on the interstate above and in the 200 block of Highway 51, heading into Jackson.

Lines fell across vehicles driving the interstate, sending sparks across the roadway and frightening drivers.

It was at the height of travel with high volumes of cars, trucks and SUVs driving at least 60 miles an hour.

Entergy spokesperson Mara Hartmann said a distribution line was taken down when the crash happened beneath the interstate overpass.

"The power lines just dropped and it sparked up, and I saw it. I heard it go over my roof," said Velma Harris, who was leaving her job on County Line Road.

The 24-year-old said she was on I-55 and just about to take the I-220 exit when the line fell on her Honda Accord.

The electrical charge burned a hole in the hood.

The giant wire also broke her windshield, driver's side mirror and damaged the roof.

"At the time I wasn't really aware of what was really going on, but I was shocked, so I pulled over for a second that's when I called the officers, and I realized everyone else had stopped. So I was the only one by myself. That's when I realized the power line had fallen out of the sky and fell on my car," added Harris.

 No other accidents related to the downed lines.

"We have at least four vehicles on the interstate the power lines did come down on.  I don't believe we have any injuries," said Lt. Brian Myers with the Ridgeland Police Department. 

Hartmann said 188 customers, mostly businesses, lost power.

Entergy crews from Jackson and Madison worked through the night to make permanent repairs.

MDOT issued traffic alerts announcing temporary road closures at Highway 51 between County Line Road and Lake Harbor Drive in Madison.

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