DOBSON — Several homes were without electricity for hours on New Year’s Day after a tractor-trailer clipped a power pole in Dobson.
John Shelton, director of Surry County emergency services, said 9-1-1 received a call at 10:25 a.m. about a wreck off Old U.S. 601. The accident happened about two houses down from the old Allison Tree store, going out of town, he said.
The semi had left Wayne Farms with a full load of fresh chicken breasts when the vehicle left the roadway, ran through a power pole and then flipped over onto its left side, Shelton described.
The driver appeared to have suffered a medical condition that caused the accident, and EMS workers transported him to Northern Hospital of Surry County for treatment. Shelton did not have the driver’s name immediately available.
The truck was hauling 41,000 pounds of chicken, and all of it had to be removed from the truck and from the scene to be trashed because of possible contamination, he said.
William Fulp Wrecker Service and Hazmat Cleanup was on scene taking care of the mess.
Losing electricity on a day where the temperature never gets above freezing can be dangerous for residents, Shelton acknowledged. While on the scene, he noticed several houses with chimneys putting them to use to burn wood to stay warm.
This can be a deadly time for people who wander out into the elements, he noted.
Three weeks ago, many rescuers teamed up to search for a 73-year-old man who had walked out into the woods and gotten lost. The temperature was in the upper-30s that day, and he was still suffering from exposure to the cold after just five hours.
With lows in the teens, those with Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia have to be closely watched during these times.