AMESBURY – A Haverhill man accused of crashing into a Monroe Street utility pole Saturday night and cutting off power to many well into Sunday faces a drunken-driving charge, according to police. 

Jonathan R. Aveni, 20, of 7 Dow Drive was brought to Portsmouth Regional Hospital in New Hampshire with injuries that were not threatening after his Toyota sport utility vehicle hit the pole about 11:30 p.m. and then flipped onto its roof. He also faces an operating to endanger charge.

“He snapped it clean,” Amesbury police Lt. Craig Bailey said. 

By the time Amesbury police officers Neil Moody and Shawn O’Brien arrived, Aveni’s car was ablaze. While Moody grabbed a fire extinguisher from his cruiser to smother the fire, O’Brien reached through the back window of Aveni’s smashed SUV and pulled him out. 

“He’s definitely lucky,” Bailey said. 

The pole landed on the road, bringing down live electrical wires. Police closed the road while firefighters and a National Grid crew cleaned up the scene.

For most of Sunday, the road — a major access route to Salisbury off Elm Street — was closed to traffic. Power was restored late in the afternoon, according to police. 

“They worked on it all day,” Bailey said. 

Also responding to the scene were Officers Kyle Arseneau and Cameron Short and Sgt. David Noyes. 

Staff writer Dave Rogers can be reached by email at drogers@newburyportnews.com. Follow him on Twitter: @drogers41008. 

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