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Herriman couple ‘lucky to be alive’ after socket smashes windshield

May 30, 2023, 10:26 PM

HERRIMAN, Utah — A couple from Herriman said they were very blessed and lucky to be alive after a piece of metal debris blasted through their windshield.

It happened on Monday night when they were going home from a Memorial Day getaway and driving down Spanish Fork Canyon.

“It’s a ¾ inch swivel socket, 21 meter,” Neil Denison said as he held the large and heavy metal socket.

He placed it inside his truck’s broken windshield to show how it was lodged there. Half of it sticking inside.

“All of a sudden boom it was like a shotgun blast of glass. Just blasted right at me. I was shaking glass out of my hair,” Denison said.

Sitting right next to him was his wife Kris who couldn’t believe what happened.

“All of a sudden I heard, bam!” Kris Denison said. “I started crying because I was like we could have got killed.”Kris Denison snapped several photos right after it happened that showed the swivel socket still lodged in the windshield. Neil Denison said it was too dangerous to pull over because there was so much traffic. Eventually, the socket fell out of the windshield and into the truck.

The Denisons hated to think what could have happened if the windshield didn’t stop it.“Safety glass slowed it down enough, otherwise it would have hit me right in the face” Neil Denison said.

“It was coming through at this angle and it would have probably hit him right here in the heart or the head and we would have gone off the road, and we could have hit someone,” Kris Denison said.

John Gleason, spokesman for the Utah Department of Transportation said a couple of years ago crews collected a month’s worth of debris from the freeways. The cleanup gathered 32,500 gallons of trash.

“We average between 1,700 to 1,900 debris-related crashes a year statewide,” Gleason said. “And UDOT typically spends $2.5 million cleaning up debris.

Gleason said this is another good reminder for drivers to put away and tie down anything that could fly off their vehicle. 

The Denisons consider themselves, “Very, very blessed,” that they made it home safely.

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Herriman couple ‘lucky to be alive’ after socket smashes windshield