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Drunk Driver Crashes Into Pole, Forcing Road Closure, Police Say

Police charged a 52-year-old man with DWI, after he allegedly crashed into a telephone pole on Lemoine Avenue late Tuesday night. Lemoine was closed between Main and Whiteman Streets until about 4 p.m. Wednesday.

An Englewood Cliffs man was charged with drunk driving after allegedly crashing into a telephone pole late Tuesday night and bringing down live wires across Lemoine Avenue at Hoym Street in Fort Lee, police said.

Lemoine remained closed between Main Street and Whiteman Street Wednesday morning, snarling rush hour traffic in the borough, and police said the section of road wasn’t expected to reopen until late afternoon or early evening.

Fort Lee police were detouring traffic at intersections leading to the scene Wednesday morning, and PSE&G crews were working at the scene near Whiteman Plaza, where wires remained on the ground across the entire roadway.

Palisades Avenue was open leading to the George Washington Bridge, but traffic was backed up.

The crash occurred at about 11:45 p.m. Tuesday, when police allege Eric Shorser, 52, was travelling north on Lemoine Avenue and drove his 2004 Jeep Wrangler off the road and into the pole.

The force of the crash brought the pole and live wires down, forcing police to shut down the section of Lemoine and set up detours, said Capt. Keith Bendul of the Fort Lee Police Department.

The Fort Lee Fire Department, Ambulance Corps and PSE&G also responded to the scene, and Shorser was transported to an area hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, Bendul said.

Shorser was charged with careless driving, Driving While Intoxicated and DWI within 1,000 feet of a school, Bendul said.

Fort Lee School No. 1 is just up Hoym Street from where the crash occurred.

Bendul said the road closure would remain in effect until PSE&G crews finish their work, which he expected to be sometime Wednesday afternoon or evening.

“They’ve got to replace the pole, and then they have to bring the transformers up, the lines up and reinstall them up onto the pole itself,” Bendul said.

He also noted that Fort Lee police are participating in the state’s “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign throughout the holidays, urging motorists not to drink and drive.

“We’ve got extra patrols out looking and focusing on intoxicated drivers,” Bendul said. “If people are out celebrating and they find that they’ve had something to drink, [they should] seek alternative ways to get home—get a cab, have a friend drive them or have a designated driver.”

Officials announced just before 4 p.m. Wednesday via the borough's Nixle Alert Notifcation system that the section of Lemoine had reopened.

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Michael S. Kelly December 12, 2012 at 03:59 PM
It was nice to get this breaking story in a timely manner. However, where was Patch when it was announced several days ago that some of our High School students were exposed to Viral Meningitis? While not fatal, it is still a serious medical issue and therefore worthy of a 'Breaking Story'. Or at the very least a follow up story of any kind. Since this site is purported to be of & for our community, to have this event completely overlooked is awfully perplexing. Could there be reasons why this event was ignored?
Baba O'Riley December 12, 2012 at 04:43 PM
NJ_Mike: it is the BOE; you know that they only let out news that they want publicized unless someone (outside of the BOE) finds out (and publishes it). Your are correct!
Michael S. Kelly December 12, 2012 at 05:52 PM
Actually the BOE did their job by contacting those directly impacted which is the students and their parents. I have no issue there. What I do have an issue with is a news outlet that says it is focused on our Town, our Community and yet there is nothing reported on it? Not even a word? This goes to coverage not a BOE matter. I question the journalistic wherewithal covering our community
Michael S. Kelly December 12, 2012 at 05:58 PM
I am disgusted by remarks such as yours. As an Irish-American you managed to insulted me and my family since my two boys are of Asian descent. They may not be Korean but your comments show your lack of tolerance. You have free reign to move wherever you feel comfortable. I gather Fort Lee is no longer comfortable for you. C'est la Vie
Ottmar Pak December 12, 2012 at 10:24 PM
NJ Mike, just curious what kind of additional information you are looking for. The teacher's name? That might be confidential?
Tracy December 13, 2012 at 12:54 AM
Off topic-- its not the school district that should release any of that information. It should be/have been the Ft Lee Health Dept. They should make that decision. The school administration is required to report most situations such as that, I beleive the treating physician as well. The students and employees' identities should be protected. The BOE has little to do with this, they may or may not have been notified in entirety--the administration runs the schools and makes those decisions--- when the BOE members are viewed as active members of the daily workings of a school, it becomes a very dangerous place for our kids.
Howard L. Pearl December 13, 2012 at 01:51 PM
On topic: Drunk driving is obviously still a serious problem. Look at the havoc created by this one individual. There is no "book" big enough to throw at him. Off topic: Viral Meningitis is treatable, but serious. The Fort Lee BOE sent voice messages out to all student familiies. The public was informed. Criticizing the Patch for no "breaking story" seems a bit superfluous. Privacy would generally prevent the BOE from disclosure of the employee's name and it would serve no purpose except to expose this employee to unnecessary negative publicity.
William Mays December 13, 2012 at 09:22 PM
On one hand, it would be embarrassing to the employee, but I think that people have the right to know if they were at risk of being infected if they were around this person before.

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