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Car strikes utility pole, crashes into building in Clearwater

Larry Williams, manager at Scott Paint, photographs the gray Chevy Monte Carlo that smashed into the window of the business in Clearwater on Wednesday.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

Larry Williams, manager at Scott Paint, photographs the gray Chevy Monte Carlo that smashed into the window of the business in Clearwater on Wednesday.

CLEARWATER — Convenience store manager Zuhair Abdallah was stocking drink coolers Wednesday afternoon when he saw a car coming toward him.

The car struck a utility pole in front of the Super Sonic on Missouri Avenue before crashing into the Scott Paint building next door.

"The whole store was shaking," Abdallah said.

"It sounded like a dad-gum airplane hit the building," said Scott Paint manager Larry Williams.

The car ended up lodged in a window of Scott Paint, the front end protruding into an office that was unoccupied at the time of the crash.

Clearwater police say the driver, who was not immediately identified, appeared to have suffered from a medical issue that caused him to lose control of the car. He was taken to a local hospital with minor injuries.

Police said he was driving north on Missouri Avenue near the Druid Road intersection when he veered across the median and southbound lanes.

Nobody at Scott Paint, 712 S Missouri Ave., was injured.

A tow truck removed the gray Chevrolet Monte Carlo amid broken glass and smashed shrubbery. Yellow caution tape was wrapped around the utility pole, which had split and splintered. Progress Energy trucks also responded to the scene.

Times photojournalist Will Vragovic contributed to this report. Stephanie Wang can be reached at (727) 445-4155 or swang@tampabay.com.

Car strikes utility pole, crashes into building in Clearwater 08/22/12 [Last modified: Wednesday, August 22, 2012 8:05pm]
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