State officials honor first responders called out to tragic dust storm crash
SALT LAKE CITY — A room full of lifesavers received thanks for everything they’ve done over the last year and continue to do every day.
The Utah Department of Health and Human Services and Office of Emergency Medical Services and Preparedness honored those living lives of service by helping others during emergencies.
Among the honorees were first responders who went above and beyond last summer during a tragic mass casualty crash brought on by a sudden dust storm.
Last July, several first responders rushed in to help on Interstate 15 in central Utah following a sandstorm that led to multiple crashes as well as killing and injuring several people, including children.
The sandstorm led to multiple crashes involving 22 vehicles, and eight people died.
Millard county got the first 911 call. Within a 15-minute period, around 20 911 calls came flooding in.
Soon after, Utah Highway Patrol troopers were among some of the first responders on scene. They were joined by Millard County EMTs, Delta fire, LifeFlight, search and rescue and many more agencies.
No training can prepare you for that type of incident.
That’s why this thank you was especially appreciated for the all-hands on deck event.
“It really showed that all the training we do all the time that’s spent behind the scenes really pays off. When it comes down to an event when you need it, it’s not the time to be developing those relationships,” said UHP Maj. Beau Mason.
Mason said everyone came together even afterward to support each other through the trauma and tragedy that impacted everybody that day.
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