Crash caused power outage up-Island



A crash on South Road in Chilmark Tuesday left a vehicle teetering on a stone wall in “kind of an amazing way,” and caused a major power outage up-Island. The crash left 2,336 homes without power in Chilmark and into Aquinnah for about an hour.

West Tisbury Fire Chief Greg Pachico told The Times the vehicle crashed in between a stone wall and utility pole. There were no injuries, he said.

Chilmark Police said the crash occurred at about 11:14 am near 50 South Road. Police and fire crews from Chilmark and West Tisbury responded, as well as Tri-Town Ambulance. 

“The crash involved a single motor vehicle which appeared to have left the roadway, striking a stone wall, tree, and utility [pole], causing damage to all. For safety, the immediate section of South Road was closed until Eversource deemed the scene safe,” according to a summary provided by the Chilmark Police. “The operator, a 17-year-old Chilmark resident, was uninjured, and the sole occupant of the 2011 Toyota Camry. The operator appeared to have become distracted while driving, and was cited on scene for marked lane violation.”

Eversource spokesman Christopher McKinnon told The Times in an email the “car crashed into a utility pole just before 11:30 am,” and Eversource’s crew members “responded to the scene, and power was restored to all customers before 12:30 pm.”
South Road was closed to through traffic, according to a Chilmark resident. Officials said the road needed to be closed so that Eversource could replace the pole that was struck.

The West Tisbury Police Department was called to redirect traffic. An officer blocked the road with cones, and had drivers turn around in the area of Grey Barn.

The accident happened during the Steamship Authority board’s virtual meeting Tuesday. SSA board representative James Malkin, who lives in Chilmark, was disconnected from the meeting as a result.