Accident north of Champaign interrupts power, sparks grass fire

Accident north of Champaign interrupts power, sparks grass fire

CHAMPAIGN — A Champaign woman was ticketed for reckless driving after her vehicle left a road north of Champaign Thursday night, took out two power poles and interrupted electrical service for a few hours.

Champaign County sheriff’s Sgt. Jeff Vercler said Chasity Barefield, 35, who listed an address in the 1300 block of Hanover Drive, Champaign, was driving a sport utility vehicle east on the Ford-Harris Road near Prospect Avenue at 11:30 p.m. when it left the road.

Barefield hit a guy wire on a power pole at the northwest corner of the intersection, pulling that pole down. The vehicle then continued east through a field and hit another power pole head-on, breaking it.

When the power lines came down at the home in the 900 block of Ford-Harris Road, they sparked a fire on the embankment of the Interstate 57 overpass, Vercler said. There were also power lines down on Prospect.

Barefield was taken to Carle Foundation Hospital, where she was treated and released.

Vercler said power was out for several hours and deputies had to reroute traffic on Prospect for about two hours.

Barefield was also given a ticket for not having proof of insurance.

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