Utility Poles Start Falling, With One Landing on Couple's SUV

Occupants survive impact, live wires all over road
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 8, 2019 7:50 PM CDT
Couple Survives Utility Pole Landing on Their Vehicle
Linda and Tom Cook survived a highway utility pole crashing onto their car Friday.   (Ken Lambert/The Seattle Times via AP)

A couple says they're lucky to be alive after dozens of power lines fell on the Seattle street they were driving on, with one wooden public utility pole striking their SUV, the AP reports. "If it had hit the glass rather than the roof, it would have just come through," Tom Cook said in an interview with KOMO-TV. "And the firefighters said the same thing, had it hit to the left or the right, it would have come down on one of us." He and wife, Linda Cook, were driving in their Ford Edge on Friday when wooden poles on the west side of the six-lane road started collapsing and one impaled their SUV. The crash was so sudden that they said they didn't realize what had happened and called out to each because the pole that separated them blocked their view of each other.

"Seeing the photos of the vehicle, if I had seen those photos as a bystander or after the fact and I looked at the photos, I would have said somebody died in the car," Tom Cook said. Live wires were strewn all over the road that abuts Seattle's Museum of Flight and King County's Boeing Field airport. It took about an hour for emergency crews to turn off the power and safely extract the couple from the vehicle. They were taken to Harborview Medical Center and treated and released the same night. Tom Cook left with five stitches, but otherwise they only suffered cuts and bruises. Seattle City Light said it is investigating what happened and said the poles were fully inspected just three years ago. (Police said two men tried to steal a utility pole in Florida.)

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