Union Democrat staff

The San Andreas-area California Highway Patrol responded to Mountain Ranch on Thursday afternoon after a suspected DUI driver crashed into a power pole in Mountain Ranch.

According to a CHP press release, Ryan J. Ireland, 24, of Railroad Flat, was driving a 2002 Dodge Dakota pickup truck about 1:35 p.m. on Railroad Flat Road near Swiss Ranch Road at a high rate of speed and while using his cell phone.

Ireland lost control of the vehicle in a curve of the road and collided with a power pole, which caused the vehicle to overturn.

Ireland sustained major injuries. He was placed under arrest for driving under the influence of alcohol and was transported to Mark Twain Medical Center for treatment of his injuries.

Railroad Flat Road was closed from about 1:35 p.m. on Jan. 3 to 7:20 a.m. on Jan. 4 for repair of the power pole, the press release stated.

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