The cleanup of transformer oil continued early Thursday morning in Arleta, where an 18-year-old man was killed when his pickup truck slammed into a power pole, bringing three large transformers down on top of the vehicle.
The crash outside 13751 Osborn St., near Arleta Avenue, occurred around 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, said Margaret Stewart of the Los Angeles Fire Department.
The deceased driver’s name was withheld pending family notification.
The transformers had to be de-energized so rescue crews could tear into the wreckage in hopes of pulling occupants of the vehicle to safety. When firefighters first arrived it wasn’t immediately clear if anyone else was inside the truck, according to Stewart.
“There was a prior collision very nearby with very minor injuries that may have been a contributing factor to the young man losing control of his truck and hitting the power pole,” said Los Angeles police Sgt. Randy Modrell, watch commander at the LAPD’s Valley Traffic Division.
Modrell said a final determination of what caused the fatal accident and whether rain or speed were factors was pending.
Ellen Cheng of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power said 254 customers were temporarily left without power due to the de-energizing of the transformers.
The transformers also spilled a large amount of oil on to the street when they crashed down, and that oil was being cleaned up by the utility. The intersection at Osborn and Arleta remained closed early this morning for the cleanup, Modrell said.
Power was restored to all customers by Wednesday evening, according to Cheng.
—City News Service