Overturned boom truck causes power outage in Tarkington

An overturned boom truck that was being used to trim trees caused a power outage in Tarkington Tuesday shortly before noon.

For the second time in 24 hours, power is out for many customers in the Tarkington area. Sam Houston Electric Cooperative, which manages the power systems in that area, says the electrical service was knocked out on Tuesday around 11:40 a.m. due to a vehicle accident.

The outage is impacting roughly 500 residents of Tarkington. The accident was caused by an overturned tree-trimming truck that was clearing tree branches and vegetation from power line easements along SH 105 at CR 2239.

“The operator of the boom had extended way out and was trimming a tree. The outrigger was down in a ditch and sunk into it,” said Pct. 5 Constable David Hunter.

Without a solid foundation for the truck’s supports and with the overextended boom, the truck tipped over, coming down on power lines.

“The operator was thrown from the bucket and landed in the dirt. He was injured but did not have life-threatening injuries. EMS treated him and transported him to a local hospital,” said Hunter.

Smith Towing of Cleveland was called to upright the overturned truck. The accident caused traffic to be diverted for about an hour and the road reopened around 1 p.m.

The nature of the first power outage, which kept Tarkington in the dark for hours Monday night, was caused by a large tree that fell on the lines around 4 p.m., breaking two poles. Sam Houston EC crews had to remove the tree and replace both poles, which took approximately seven hours.

Sam Houston EC’s online outage map says that the 500 impacted customers should have power restored by 2:30 p.m.

According to Keith Stapleton, chief communications officer for Sam Houston EC, customers can keep up with the latest information on the outage by going online to http://www.samhouston.net. The outage viewer is also available on the free app, mySamHouston. The app can also be used to report outages, view and pay a Sam Houston EC bill, and view electricity consumption by the month, week, day and hour.

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