- Cape student sues, accuses school officials of slamming her to ground multiple times (04/28/16)46
- Bob Evans restaurant in Cape Girardeau among chain's 21 closings (04/26/16)9
- Missouri House votes to allow concealed weapons without permits (04/28/16)8
- Police report filed, but no charges in incident at Cape Central (04/29/16)40
- Two hurt in motorcycle wreck on Interstate 55 (04/25/16)1
- Senator introduces bill for I-57 that would connect Sikeston with Little Rock (04/28/16)4
- Law firm requests information about Cape's traffic cameras (04/25/16)2
- Local lawmakers split over failed medical marijuana bill; voters may have a say (04/26/16)19
- Local company makes eco-friendly kitty litter that cuts cat-box smell (04/25/16)
- Man accused of pointing BB gun at Chaffee resident (04/26/16)2
Rollover crash takes down power lines, shutting down North Kingshighway
It was a tough call, as assistant fire chief Mark Hasheider saw it. They could play it safe and wait for Ameren to arrive and turn off power. Or, the firefighters could try to extricate an injured man from his truck as the power lines and their more than 4,000 volts of current dangled overhead.
The Cape Girardeau Fire Department faced this dilemma after the driver of a Chevy TrailBlazer somehow flipped his truck as he traveled northbound on a rainy and wet North Kingshighway. The truck knocked down a utility pole and knocked out power in about 15 nearby homes.
The call for assistance came in shortly after 5 p.m., Hasheider said. Several blocks of the northbound lane -- rush-hour traffic -- had to be diverted to nearby Kingsway Drive. The crash closed the major Cape Girardeau street from Kurre Lane near the Ford Groves auto dealership, south to Hopper Road.
The accident took place as the driver of the vehicle was headed north, according to Cape Girardeau Police Department spokesman Darin Hickey. The driver lost control, Hickey said, as he changed lanes. The Trail Blazer left the roadway on the right side and flipped onto its top. It struck the utility pole and a fire hydrant, according to Hickey.
With the driver hanging upside down by his seatbelt, Hashheider could hear him moaning.
And the wires were still hot.
Firefighters opted to go for a rescue. As emergency first-responders, they knew the benefit of providing prompt treatment.
"It was an extremely dangerous situation," an admittedly worried Hashheider said. "It was a risk. But these guys are well trained and they know what they're doing."
Within a matter of minutes, the man -- described by Hashheider as in his late 20s or early 30s -- was removed and rushed via ambulance to Saint Francis Medical Center. Police did not release the driver's name.
Police were still investigating the circumstances of the one-vehicle accident. The section of North Kingshighway was blocked for hours -- as late as 9 p.m. -- as Ameren crews worked to repair the damage.
Hashheider was relieved none of the firefighters was hurt.
"You don't want to pull these guys back cause they're going to want to do it," Hashheider said. "But you have to judge the risk versus the benefit. They did all right."