A PG&E power transmission tower on East Dodds Road near the Escalon Bellota Rd. was toppled when it was struck by a speeding auto being driven by a suspected drunk driver. The CHP in Stockton identified the driver of the Mitsubishi sedan as 23 year old Jesus Mata who suffered serious injuries while his two female passengers suffered minor injuries and were treated and released. Mata was arrested for DUI after being transported to a Stockton hospital. All three occupants had to be extricated from the crumpled wreckage by the fire department.
The tower was struck shortly after 2 a.m. and nearly crashed completely to the ground. Power was interrupted to the area while PG&E crews worked to reroute the power and secure the fallen tower.