Snow, bad drivers cause hundreds of morning crashes in Northern Utah

Troopers responded to multiple slide-off crashes, including this one on I-18 west of Salt Lake City. Photo: Gephardt Daily

NORTHERN UTAH, Feb. 19, 2018 (Gephardt Daily) — Monday morning’s commute through falling snow was a rough one in Northern Utah.

Between midnight and 11 a.m. Monday, more than 275 crashes were reported in four counties.

The crash numbers, provided by the Utah Highway Patrol, were

  • Salt Lake and Utah County: 217
  • Davis County:45
  • Weber County:16

In addition, three troopers and the driver of an incident management truck were hit between Sunday night and Monday morning.

• The first trooper was hit at 8:10 p.m. Sunday in Summit County, at State Route 40’s mile marker 11, north of Heber City.

The trooper was responding to a crash, eastbound, when a Subaru Outback was traveling too fast and hit the back of the trooper’s car. The trooper was inside the vehicle, but there were no injuries to him or the driver of the Subaru.

• The second was in Utah County. At 8:30 a.m. Monday, a trooper had the far right lane closed for a tow truck, picking up a vehicle that had slid off. The trooper was on northbound I-15 at University Parkway in Orem.

A pickup truck did not move over for the trooper and hit the back of his vehicle. The trooper was in the vehicle. There were no injuries to him or the driver of the pick up.

• The third was in Salt Lake County. At 10:30 a.m. Monday, a trooper had the HOV lane closed at 7400 South, northbound. A Chevy van was traveling too fast, drove over the traffic flares, and hit the trooper’s car.

The trooper was inside the vehicle, but there were no injuries to him or the occupants in the van.

• At 11 a.m., Monday, the incident management truck was hit. The truck was blocking the far left lane on I-80 at 1200 East, at 11:00 a.m. for a crash. A driver was traveling too fast and was not able to stop before hitting the incident management truck. There were no injuries to either driver.

“With these numbers and the stories listed above, we need driver’s to slow down,” said the Utah Highway Patrol statement. “They need to give themselves more time to get to where they are going. If they see emergency vehicles on the road (police, fire, ambulance, emergency management trucks, tow trucks) they need to slow down and move over if they can. If they can’t they need to slow and move over in their own lane as much as possible to give us the space we need to work.

“We also need drivers to move off the freeway if they are involved in a crash. If the damage is minimal to where the vehicles are driveable, and there are no injuries to anyone involved, the Highway Patrol is asking them to move the crash off to the next exit, to a gas station or parking lot, or some place safe off the freeway.

“Once they are there, call 911 and we will send a trooper out to handle the crash. It is much safer for the trooper and the parties involved to deal with a crash off the freeway, then in the lanes where traffic is traveling 60 to 70 mph pass the crash. It also opens up the lanes so traffic can flow freely, eliminating secondary crashes that are caused from the back up.”


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