New accounts suggest driver slid off I-240, hit light pole before it impaled car

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A day later, WREG continues to seek answers about how an MLGW light pole impaled a car on I-240 Wednesday evening.

Tyler Griggs was passing by the Lamar exit when he said he saw the black Camaro driving through the median with the pole hanging out of it.

“It was raining, and I looked over and the guy’s going through the median with a big light pole through his car,” Griggs said.

The 25-year-old driver somehow made it back to the safety of the road where Good Samaritans, including a nurse, freed him from his car.

“I kind of reached my arms underneath his armpits and just, with all my strength, pulled him into the backseat,” said the nurse who wishes to remain anonymous.

The nurse didn’t witness the pole going through the car, but she spoke to someone who claims they saw the car hydroplane prior to being impaled.

“It was like he hydroplaned, and his car just spun around a few times in the middle of the road and then into the grass and then, I guess, slammed into that pole,” she said.

Griggs said it sounds like a likely scenario given the wet conditions Wednesday.

“It was making my car slip and slide everywhere, so it’s very possible he could have ran into it somehow and it  just came down in just the right manner,” he said.

No one could explain how the pole went through the car at the angle it did with no visible damage to the roof.

MLGW removed the pole Thursday morning and have since replaced it but said they didn’t know what caused it to impale the car. Memphis Police released a statement saying a Chevrolet Camaro left the roadway and slid sideways before it, "went into the grass median between I240W and I240E and encountered a metal utility pole, which went through the vehicle driver's side window to passenger side window."

In a statement, MLGW said, “MLGW inspects interstate poles on a weekly basis. However, poles identified for repair are not always fixed within a week.”

The utility said it had no record of a pole being on the ground at that location prior to Wednesday night.

The victim's sister told WREG her brother is still unconscious. She said that at one point he was bleeding from his brain, but that the bleeding has stopped.

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