Careless driver knocks out power to hundreds in Kennewick, then flees

Update: He had a power-pole shaped dent in his SUV. Police arrested him for hit-and-run power outage

A hit-and-run driver sheared through a utility pole, leaving more than a 1,000 people in Kennewick in the dark Saturday morning.

Police were still searching for the driver who demolished the pole near the corner of Washington Street and Second Avenue at 6:45 a.m.

Along with cutting the line to hundreds of Benton PUD customers, it shut off traffic lights and left live electrical wires on the ground.

PUD crews worked for more than four hours restoring power to most of the homes and businesses surrounding the scene, said Jodi Henderson, the utility’s manager of communications and governmental relations.

The outage lasted until 3:30 p.m. for about 40 people.

Anyone with information on the crash or driver is asked to call the non-emergency dispatch number at 509-628-0333.

Cameron Probert covers breaking news and education for the Tri-City Herald, where he tries to answer readers’ questions about why police officers and firefighters are in your neighborhood. He studied communications at Washington State University.