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A vehicle crash caused a power outage Wednesday in south Benton County Wednesday, a Pacific Power spokesperson said. 

The crash, at 11:42 a.m., initially left more than 1,000 people without power, but by 3 p.m. the number of customers without power had been reduced to about 200. 

Tom Gauntt, with Pacific Power, said the accident was on Highway 99W between Starr Road and Stow Pitt Road.

Gauntt said Pacific Power crews estimated that the remaining 200 customers would have power restored by 10 p.m. Gauntt said two power poles needed to be replaced to restore power, which is why the outage was expected to last so long. 

Greg Ridler, Benton County undersheriff, said the accident was caused by a driver who had a medical issue and crashed into a power pole. The accident caused a small fire, which was extinguished, Ridler said. 

Ridler said the driver refused medical transport and was not charged. 

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Anthony Rimel

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