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Published: Friday, 11/25/2011

Power restored in Port Clinton area following accident


PORT CLINTON — A Marblehead, Ohio, woman was arrested and accused of impaired driving after she was injured in a single-vehicle crash Thursday night that closed State Rt. 163 near State Rt. 53 for three hours, causing a power and phone service outage and a store evacuation, authorities said.

Joanna Fifer, 20, the driver, suffered minor injuries and refused treatment at the scene. Ms. Fifer was arrested at the scene for driving under the influence. She was transported to the Port Clinton Police Department, where her breath test result was .205, about 2 1/2 times the legal limit of 0.08 in Ohio, according to the Ohio Highway Patrol.

The crash occurred about 11:45 p.m. on westbound State Rt. 163 near State Rt. 53 in Ottawa County’s Portage Township east of Port Clinton, sheriff deputies said.

Ms. Fifer was driving west on Route 163, when she lost control of her pickup truck, causing it to run off of the right side of the road. The vehicle then struck a culvert and a utility pole, shearing it off at the base and dawning electrical power lines that fell across the roadway, deputies said.

The crash caused a power and phone service outage in the area. A nearby Walmart department store located on Route 163 just west of Route 53, lost all power and was evacuated during the annual Black Friday shopping rush. The power was restored early Friday morning, according to the sheriff’s office.

Port Clinton is about 40 miles east of Toledo.

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