ROAD TO ZERO
154 people killed on Utah’s roads this year, and it’s only July
Jul 8, 2022, 12:01 PM | Updated: 12:41 pm
SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Highway Patrol said the state saw a record-breaking year of fatalities on the roads in 2021, and Utah is on track to potentially break that record this year.
And it’s only July.
Another crash on Interstate 15 left two people dead in Lehi. State troopers said a Honda Pilot was stopped on the freeway when it was rear-ended by a Nissan passenger car that tried to swerve out of its path.
The Pilot’s driver was hospitalized in serious condition, along with a passenger who was in the Nissan. Both later died from their injuries.
The Nissan’s driver had suffered minor injuries in the crash.
UHP Sgt. Cameron Roden said investigators are working to determine why the Pilot came to a stop in a traffic lane.
Earlier this week in South Jordan, another tragedy struck as two children riding together on a motorized bike were hit by a car. Police said the driver drifted into the lane and hit them.
One of those boys has since died.
Ultimately, Roden said anytime anyone stops along the freeway, it can be a dangerous place no matter where one is.
Child dies after being hit by SUV in South Jordan; other child in stable condition
With that, for an emergency, if a person has a flat, needs to make a call, or is becoming fatigued, he said one should do their best to get off the freeway and find a safer spot.
“Make sure you’re aware of what’s around you. Always keep your eye on that traffic that’s approaching. Even if you’re off on the shoulder, keep your seatbelt on if you’re sitting in the car because if someone does drift off the road and hit you, your chances of getting hurt are decreased by keeping that seatbelt on,” Roden said.
According to the Utah Department of Public Safety data, at least 154 people have been killed on Utah’s roads this year.
Roden said the uptick in fatal wrecks they’re seeing includes pedestrians, as well as vulnerable users, such as motorcyclists. Impaired drivers and wrong-way drivers have also been among the number of fatal wrecks.
“We’ve seen more wrong-way crashes that are tied to impairment than we did all of last year,” Roden said.