The beginning of morning rush hour, cars on the highway traveling to and from downtown
MONTREAL – An unfortunately positioned utility pole, which gained national notoriety for its position smack in the middle of a rural Quebec highway, is gone.
It survived there for two months. Fortunately, all the motorists who drove past it survived, too.
No accidents were reported as a result of the bizarre phenomenon of infrastructure planning — or lack thereof. Players involved in the project blamed poor communication for the fact that the pole wasn’t removed in time from the path of a newly paved road.
The pole ended up there as the result of miscommunication between transport and utility officials following a months-long roadwork project.
As late as Monday, officials expressed regret that the pole would have to stay there for a few more days. On Tuesday morning, the lamented landmark was seen in newspapers across the country. By Tuesday afternoon, it had suddenly been removed.
A Transport Quebec spokeswoman said late Tuesday that the pole was gone and workers were filling up the hole. The site was located on Highway 251 in a village near Sherbrooke, Que.
The problem started when a piece of highway was re-routed to avoid a dangerous curve.
The new trajectory coincided with a utility line. Typically, power-and-phone lines are removed before such road work is completed.
It’s not clear what happened but Transport Quebec spokeswoman Caroline Larose says an internal investigation is ongoing.
Highway 251 is a 38-kilometre stretch of provincial highway that runs north-south in the Eastern Townships region.
The pole was in Johnville, a small village along the route.