Mountain View police reported hit-and-run, but witnesses say driver cooperated, didn't flee crash

Driver who struck hydrant on Tyrella Avenue reportedly suffered from food poisoning

A driver who hit two vehicles and struck a fire hydrant on Tyrella Avenue in Mountain View last week cooperated with police and was apparently suffering from food poisoning, contrary to a police report that he fled the scene.

Last week, the Voice and other news outlets reported that the hydrant, located on the 300 block of Tyrella Avenue, was struck by a car around 9:30 p.m. on Sunday, May 26.

Witnesses say the man driving the Volkswagon Atlas smashed the front of one vehicle in an apparent head-on collision and side-swiped another before striking the hydrant, causing a geyser of water to erupt. No one was injured in the incident.

The Mountain View Police Department initially reported that the driver fled the scene and was not located, and the road was shut down to turn off the water and clear the scene. But residents in the area told the Voice via email that police officers were questioning a man who appeared to be the driver, and conducted a field sobriety test before letting him go.

Police spokeswoman Katie Nelson, when presented with the witness information, then said the man reported he was suffering from food poisoning while driving, and that his illness was likely the reason for the collisions. She confirmed that he cooperated with the police investigation, and was not initially charged or cited for any crimes, Nelson said.

It's unknown whether a final collision report will suggest any citations or charges, Nelson said.

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4 people like this
Posted by resident
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jun 5, 2019 at 11:45 am

Any explanation of how the initial police report was so messed up? That kind of reporting can lead to a witch hunt.

6 people like this
Posted by Another neighbor
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Jun 5, 2019 at 12:24 pm

I drive down this road almost everyday and live within the neighborhood. I can attest that the folks that drive down this street are sometimes driving down the middle of the road and hardly give-way. I'm figuring the car that didn't hit the hydrant may have caused this. I wonder if the car was driving around without their headlights on and probably were using their daytime running lights (which are not as bright as the full-on headlights). I've also seen so many drivers around Mountain View forgetting to turn on their headlights. It amazes me how one can see down the road without having the headlights on or even noticing that the road ahead of them is "Dark". The funny thing is that flashing these vehicles with my own headlights by turning them off and on and then using the bright-lights, and still these drivers have no clue as to what I'm trying to tell them to do. Very dangerous driving around town with no headlights for motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians. MVPD please crackdown on these drivers at night or something tragic might happen next.

2 people like this
Posted by Joel Lachter
a resident of North Whisman
on Jun 5, 2019 at 8:40 pm

Joel Lachter is a registered user.

@Another. The red Hyundai in the picture was parked and unoccupied at the time it was hit. The owner/driver showed up around 10 the next morning and was quite confused/unhappy to find her car had disappeared.

5 people like this
Posted by Jes' Sayin'
a resident of North Whisman
on Jun 5, 2019 at 10:54 pm

They drive down the middle because they're going too fast and are afraid some vehicle is going to pop out of a driveway and hit them. Cars are likely to pop out of driveways because all the street parking is clogged with behemoth SUVs that prevent people from seeing whether any traffic is coming.

People don't have their lights on because the new cars have these night detection systems that are supposed to turn the lights on automatically, but they don't work very well.

There are so many SUVs because that type of vehicle has a tax exemption because they're supposed to be specialized work equipment, even though 94% of them are used by ordinary drivers.

Our whole system is tending to fail because it's based on old paradigms that no longer apply.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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