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Solo-Vehicle Crash Closes Highway 17 for Hours

SANTA CLARA (CBS SF) -- The California Highway Patrol say they have arrested the driver in a traffic collision that knocked down power lines and forced the overnight closure of state Highway 17 in unincorporated Santa Clara County for being under the influence of alcohol.

The agency and PG&E will meet this afternoon to discuss permanent repairs to the damaged power poles.

Officers called to the scene on Highway 17 north of Idylwild Road at 12:48 a.m. found that a northbound Ford F-150 pickup truck had struck a power pole, downing electrical lines on the highway in both directions.

Officials closed the highway to traffic at 1:28 a.m.

Officers tested and arrested the driver of the pickup, 23-year-old Claudia Maldonado of Pleasanton, for being under the influence of alcohol.

PG&E crews were able to clear the power lines from the southbound lanes, which reopened to traffic around 6:20 a.m.

Northbound lanes remained closed as crews worked to secure damaged power poles south and north of Idylwild Road, with work completed around 7:45 a.m.

"Preliminary investigation revealed the truck struck one pole and caused the wires to whiplash, causing the other pole to be damaged approximately ½ a mile away," according to the CHP.

The Ford F-150 was towed and all lanes were reopened around 8:50 a.m.

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