No one was injured late Monday morning when a delivery truck knocked down a light pole in the Billings Heights, causing the pole to topple onto two cars idling at the busy intersection of Main Street and Airport Road.
The incident could have gone worse for Dennis Rudolph of Billings, who was driving a 2002 “Neiman Marcus” special edition Ford Thunderbird at the time.
“I was gonna take the pickup and I thought, ‘Oh, it’s such a beautiful day. I’m gonna take the convertible,'” he said, noting that the car is one of just 200 models that were produced.
Waiting at the red light on Airport Road, Rudolph said he looked over as he heard the beeping as a truck at the gas station to his right began backing up from its park space — and then the “boom” as it struck the bottom of the light pole.
“I looked up and saw it (the pole) coming down, and I inched forward as far as I could,” he said.
The pole toppled down on top of the T-Bird and a Chevrolet sedan in the next lane over, bouncing slightly after it struck and landing on his shoulder.
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“If I’d have stayed where I was, it would have hit me on the top of the head,” Rudolph said. “The Lord was looking out for me.”
Traffic was briefly routed around the affected three lanes of the intersection until Billings Firefighters lifted the downed pole up and onto the sidewalk.
Both convertible and sedan appeared to have suffered only minor cosmetic damage.
Billings Police Officer Sean Weston said he was still taking statements and did not immediately know whether the driver of the commercial truck would be cited.