Avalanche, hazardous conditions close multiple Utah canyons

Mar 15, 2023, 7:40 AM | Updated: 1:13 pm

TAYLORSVILLE, Utah — It has been a busy couple of days for cleanup crews as flash floods hit southern Utah with rockslides and avalanches reported in the central and northern parts of the state.

U.S. Highway 6 was closed in Price Canyon due to a rollover crash involving a semi-truck while U.S. 89 reopened in Logan Canyon following an avalanche Wednesday morning.

The closures came as heavy valley rain and mountain snow move into the Beehive State, with a chance for thunderstorms this afternoon in central and southern Utah.

State troopers say the rolled semi was carrying a hazardous load, and it took most of the morning to clear the roadway.

(Utah Highway Patrol) (Utah Highway Patrol) (Utah Highway Patrol)

This is just the beginning of a busy season as state troopers expect more rockslides as spring runoff starts to take its toll. Add in the amount of snow the state has received, and more avalanches are also to be expected.

“The biggest thing is attention, you know?” UHP Sgt. Cameron Roden said.

Like always, paying attention behind the wheel while driving is a must.

Now, with rockslides, Roden said it is important to be aware of what is above you and around the corner, too.

“If you are able, if it is a multi-lane road and you can change lanes to get away from that to give yourself a little bit of space, that is always helpful,” Roden said.

In central Utah, state Route 31 is closed at Huntington Canyon due to a previous avalanche and S.R. 191 was closed 12 miles north of Helper due to a rockslide Wednesday. Troopers said the debris has been cleared from S.R. 191 but 4-wheel-drive/chains were required.

SR 31 closed until Thursday due to avalanches

S.R. 191 is also closed at the Utah-Wyoming border due to winter weather and hazardous driving conditions.

Logan Canyon reopened Wednesday morning after what Roden said appeared to be a naturally caused avalanche. He said drivers need to be on their toes while traveling in canyon areas and travel at safe speeds.

Earlier Wednesday, one person was killed in a crash on the Provo Center Street onramp to southbound Interstate 15. No cause for the crash has been released, and investigators have reopened the ramp.

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Avalanche, hazardous conditions close multiple Utah canyons