CHP: Man visiting from Fiji arrested in suspected DUI crash near Occidental

A man visiting Sonoma County from Fiji was arrested Sunday morning after crashing a SUV into a power pole near Occidental, the CHP said.

Nemani Rasiga, 22, was booked into Sonoma County Jail on suspicion of drunken driving, Officer Brian Wood said.

Around 7:13 a.m., Rasiga was traveling west on Occidental Road just east of Frati Lane at an unknown rate of speed when he swerved into a power pole on the right side of the road, Wood said. The red Toyota Rav4 sheared the power pole before rolling over onto its left side, he said.

“It sheared the (pole) off at the bottom - it split off and was basically sitting on the ground,” Wood said.

A VeriHealth paramedic spotted Rasiga, the vehicle’s sole occupant, walking a few hundred yards away, Wood said. The man was trying to contact family members, who live nearby the crash site, Wood said.

Rasiga complained of pain but wasn’t taken to the hospital, Wood said.

The collision knocked out power to six homes in the area, PG&E spokesman J.D. Guidi said. Crews were working to replace the pole and restore power by late Sunday afternoon.

- Hannah Beausang

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