Driver says radio distracted before North Auburn crash: CHP

Internet, phones down after solo vehicle crash into pole
By: Gus Thomson, Journal Staff Writer
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The driver is blaming the radio for a crash into a telephone pole near Auburn. The 21-year-old driver told a California Highway Patrol officer after the crash that the radio temporarily diverted his attention. “That’s the last thing he remembers,” said Officer Tom Vandre. The car was traveling up a hill and missed a turn, breaking off a wooden phone pole and ending up about 15 feet over an embankment. The driver a Meadow Vista resident whose name was unavailable at the scene, was taken to Sutter Auburn Faith Hospital by ambulance complaining of back and shin pain. The accident occurred at about 8:30 a.m. An AT&T crew was dispatched to replace the pole and tighten up wires that were hanging low in the air over Dry Creek Road, near Mountain Spring Road. The crash knocked out phone and Internet service to a broad swath of homes along Dry Creek Road. Traffic was diverted from the rural thoroughfare but not before a full-sized Forest Lake Christian School bus with 18 children inside attempted to turn around on a side road and ended up stuck in the mud. The driver, who declined to give her name, said everybody was safe. The Journal’s Gus Thomson can be reached at