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Driver injured in SW wreck

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By Jim Clark

A 31-year-old man was hospitalized in critical condition early Tuesday after his car smashed into a utility pole in Southwest Ocala.

At 12:50 a.m. Tuesday, Marion County Fire Rescue Team was dispatched to reports of a motor vehicle accident near the intersection of Southwest 95th Street Road and Southwest 60th Avenue, Ocala. The 911 caller reported that a vehicle hit a power pole and the vehicle was possibly on fire.

MCFR Rescue 55 and Squad 21 arrived on scene at 12:58 to find the 2005 Buick Rainier SUV with heavy damage and the concrete power pole split in half. The vehicle was not on fire. Ladder 21 arrived on scene, established command and directed extrication to begin.

Firefighters worked quickly to cut the roof, take the doors and roll the dash board off of the driver. Justin R. Griffis was extricated from the vehicle at 1:51 and taken to a Ocala Regional Medical Center as a “trauma alert”.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, Griffis was southbound on 60th, went off the road to the right at the intersection and struck the concrete utility pole. The pole snapped, causing the traffic light to fall to the pavement, causing a roadblock. The Marion County Road Department responded to make repairs.