Worcester man arrested after crashing into downed power lines in North Smithfield

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NORTH SMITHFIELD – A truck traveling through an area where roads were blocked to repair downed power lines during Monday’s storm nearly struck a cruiser before driving into the dangerous repair scene, according to police.

The driver, Aaron Kuipers, 35, of Worcester was arrested after the incident and charged with DUI, reckless driving and offense against public safety.

According to a release from the department, officers were posted at a blockade on Quaker Highway at the intersection with Buxton Street while Rhode Island Energy worked to restore power to the area. Around 4:50 p.m., a white pickup truck approached at a high rate of speed, narrowly missing the police vehicle before driving into the downed lines across the road.

“Kuipers was emitting a strong odor of alcohol of alcoholic beverage, both from his person and emitting from his breath,” noted the release. “He admitted to officers that he had consumed alcoholic beverages prior to operating his vehicle.”

At a preliminary breath test at the scene, Kuipers showed a .178 percent BAC. He declined further testing at the station, say police, and was issued a summons for refusal to submit to chemical test as well as a roadway violation.

Kuipers was released with a court appearance scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 2.

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