CHARLESTON, W.Va. - Businesses were closed and quiet along the normally bustling Goff Mountain Road in Cross Lanes after a tractor-trailer hauling an excavator became entangled in power lines, pulling them down and breaking a pole.
Tonya Hull, shift leader at Taco Bell, said the Cross Lanes store had five customers all day. Another two walked in about 4:45 p.m. just before the store closed.
The last two customers were utility workers who had been on the scene most of the day.
Just as they were being served, bringing the total customer count of the day to seven, the general manager called and told Hull to close.
"Usually we have 100 or more people coming through here, but it's just been really slow," said Hull, who has worked for Taco Bell more than 20 years.
The incident, which happened about 9:30 a.m. Monday near City National Bank, left power lines lying on top of another vehicle that was passing through at the time.
Emergency workers were able to remove passengers from the vehicle, Kanawha Metro 911 dispatchers said.
No one could reach businesses along the stretch, which normally sees heavy traffic flow.
Emergency officials closed all lanes of Goff Mountain Road from the Interstate 64 exit ramp at Cross Lanes to the West Washington Street intersection.
School buses for Cross Lanes Elementary, Andrew Jackson Middle School and Nitro High School experienced severe delays in their afternoon runs.
C.W. Sigman, Kanawha County fire coordinator, said he was told at 10:30 a.m. it would take 10 to 12 hours to reopen the road.
"That's a nightmare out there anyway," Sigman said. "It's a real mess today."