NORTH PORT — A dump truck slammed into a concrete power pole on River Road, snapping the pole and killing the driver.
The crash happened at about 11:35 a.m. Monday at River Road near Playmore Road, about a half mile south of Tamiami Trail. Witnesses said a dump truck was headed north when a tire blew out, sending the truck off the road to the right.
The truck went several feet off the road before hitting the 70-foot pole, which broke at the base and tumbled toward the road, taking the power lines down with it. The pole snapped again, this time higher up near the power line connections, before hitting the ground.
The crash disrupted electrical service for about 3,000 Florida Power & Light customers in North Port and Port Charlotte for a short time. FPL crews had to turn off portions of the power supply to allow emergency workers to get to the truck.
The driver was pronounced dead at the scene, the Florida Highway Patrol reported.
River Road between U.S. 41 and Winchester Boulevard was closed to traffic for a portion of the afternoon.