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Car hits St. Helena power pole, leading to DUI arrest, traffic delays

Car hits St. Helena power pole, leading to DUI arrest, traffic delays

Power pole broken in crash

A power pole near Main Street and Pratt Avenue, in front of Alila Napa Valley, was broken in a solo vehicle accident that occurred early Saturday morning.

A Napa man was arrested for DUI after police say he ran into a utility pole at Main Street and Pratt Avenue in St. Helena early Saturday morning, causing a road closure that disrupted traffic late into the afternoon.

The incident occurred in front of Alila Napa Valley at about 1:45 a.m. Saturday. Police arrived to find the utility pole broken nearly in half, with the top part hanging by the wires.

Leodegario Solorio Vargas, 48, was arrested on suspicion of DUI and transported to the Napa County jail for booking. Vargas was already on probation for a prior DUI, according to St. Helena Police Chief Chris Hartley.

Main Street remained closed between Pratt Avenue and Deer Park Road until Tuesday afternoon while PG&E installed a new pole. The northbound lane was opened to traffic by 2 p.m., and the southbound lane remained closed until about 7:30 p.m.

The closure resulted in bumper-to-bumper traffic on Silverado Trail for much of Saturday, with traffic also backing up on Pratt Avenue and Pope Street.

More than 180 PG&E customers lost power on Saturday.

The head-on collision occurred on Highway 29 near Dunaweal Road shortly after 6:30 a.m. Thursday, according to Cal Fire and the California Highway Patrol. (Video courtesy of Cal Fire/Napa County Fire, via Facebook)

You can reach Jesse Duarte at 967-6803 or

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