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Damages Estimated at $50,000 After DOT Truck Takes Out Traffic Signals, Utility Poles 

Damages are estimated at $50,000 after an Iowa DOT maintenance truck knocked out traffic signal lights and took down four utility poles in Charles City Tuesday.

The incident occurred at the intersection of North Grand Avenue and Highway 18 shortly after 10 a.m. Tuesday, where the boom hoist of the DOT truck hit and bent a set of  traffic lights, knocking them out of service before getting caught on overhead power lines and taking down the utility poles. Pete Hjelmstad with the DOT’s Mason City District office says crews had removed a sign in the area nearby, however, the boom hoist did not get lowered all the way down before striking the traffic lights and getting tangled in the power lines. 

Crews from MidAmerican Energy, Mediacom and Perry Novak Electric responded to the scene to restore utility services interrupted by the mishap. Charles City Police Chief Hugh Anderson says the efforts by MidAmerican to get power and service back to customers in a span of four to six hours was impressive.

Hjelmstad says the DOT hopes to have traffic signal lights operating by early next week at the latest. In the meantime, a stop sign was placed in the middle of the intersection to control traffic flow in all directions.

There were no damages to the DOT truck and no injuries.

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Mark Pitz

News Director
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