CHICAGO (CBS) — A section of the Belmont Cragin community was left without power late Tuesday afternoon after a utility truck snagged some overhead wires and knocked down multiple power poles.
ComEd said a truck hit a pole and knocked down the wires in the 5000 block of West Oakdale Avenue, near Lavergne Avenue, around 3 p.m.
When a truck snags a power line that drags it and yanks the line alley to alley three blocks long, it makes for a scary, messy, and literal hot mess.
Several power lines were yanked right in a row, CBS 2’s Chris Tye reported. The poles were pulled down by the force of the line that was snagged by the crane utility truck.
Several wooden utility poles also came down.
The orange arm on the top of the truck remained caught on the power line as late as 10 p.m.
A total of 500 customers were left without power in the area.
Due to the sweltering heat on Tuesday and the power knocking out air conditioning, Chicago Transit Authority cooling buses were also sent to the scene.
The lines went flying when everything got pulled tight and tipped over, and lines that went up and into people’s homes even ended up getting detached.
Backyards in the neighborhood have power cables everywhere, on top of garages, in gardens, and even over front yards.
It was a hot evening, but a truly scary afternoon.
“When I looked, you know, I heard the noise and I see all the poles that were going down,” said neighbor Nilda Acosta. “It looked like it was going to start a fire. Thank God it didn’t.”
ComEd told residents they should have power back by about midnight. Just before 10 p.m., some of the neighborhood saw power come back on and there was some applause when that happened.
Still, some neighbors were not sold on the restoration timeline and had decided to load up on ice, or leave and stay with family amid the heat wave.