Blackout blues in Hayward

Police said about 2,000 residents had their power knocked out until wee morning hours on Thursday, starting around 4:30 p.m. Wednesday when a car crashed into a power pole on the 26100 block of Eldridge Street.

Despite a dramatic, power-pole shearing crash, only one person was injured, and it was minor. Rob Ritchie lives nearby and sent us this photo. “I was sitting at my computer working on a project, when a huge thundering sound occurred, followed by an explosive sound, as well,” wrote Ritchie. “Instantly, all power went out. I went outside and looked down the street to see quite a horrific sight!”

Police said they had to put out stop signs and assign officers to direct traffic in the area. “It was a mess,” said Lt. Christine Orrey.

Ritchie said he has been trying to get speed bumps installed on his street for nine years. “Cars constantly speed on this street, sometimes at very high speeds for the conditions,” he wrote. “Perhaps the city of Hayward will reconsider, before other tragedies occur.”

Another Hayward resident called and said he had just taken his mother to a dialysis treament at a Jackson Street clinic when the lights went out. Karl Kanoho said patients had to be transported to hospitals because the facility has no backup power. His mother hadn’t started treatment yet and had to come back the next day.

“None of the (dialysis centers) have backup generators,” Kanoho said, adding that he felt lucky because his mother wasn’t in critical need of the treatment. “But it could have been a disaster.”

Anyone else with a blackout story?

Eric Kurhi