Moped driver injured in accident; police department offers safety tips

St. George Police officers attend to the scene of a collision between a moped and an SUV, St. George, Utah, Feb. 12. 2015 | Photo by Mori Kessler, St. George News

ST. GEORGE – A man driving a moped struck an SUV Thursday afternoon, after the driver of the SUV ran a red light at the intersection of 270 East and Riverside Drive in St. George.

Just before 6 p.m. Thursday, a white Infiniti SUV was traveling westbound on Riverside Drive, St. George Police Sgt. Sam Despain said.

St. George Police officers attend to the scene of a collision between a moped and an SUV, St. George, Utah, Feb. 12. 2015 | Photo by Mori Kessler, St. George News
St. George Police officers attend to the scene of a collision between a moped and an SUV, St. George, Utah, Feb. 12. 2015 | Photo by Mori Kessler, St. George News

“For some unknown reason, the vehicle went through the red light,” Despain said. “At that time, a person on a moped was northbound on 270 East through the intersection, and that moped hit the side of the SUV.”

The driver of the moped was transported to the hospital by private vehicle, complaining of internal pain, but Despain said he does not know the extent of the man’s injuries. The man driving the SUV and his three juvenile passengers were not injured.

“The driver of the SUV was issued a citation for failing to obey a traffic signal,” Despain said.

While the driver of the moped was not at fault, there are safety concerns relating to both full-sized motorcycles and smaller motorized vehicles, such as mini-motorcycles, motor scooters and mopeds, Despain said.

Thursday’s accident happened less than three weeks after a fatal scooter accident occurred in St. George and just two days after a man crashed his moped in Zion National Park.

Depending on the size of the motorcycle or the moped, a motorcycle endorsement may not be needed by the driver, Despain said. A motorcycle endorsement is an addition to a regular driver’s license and requires a learner’s permit with restrictions for a period of time or a motorcycle riding class.

Smaller two-wheeled vehicles do not require a motorcycle endorsement but are restricted to certain streets, depending on the speed limit.

“Motorcycles and motor scooters are smaller, and so motorists just need to be aware of that and just pay attention while driving to watch for these motorcycles and motor scooters,” Despain said.

“Drivers of those, of the motorcycles, need to be aware that they’re less visible, pay attention to their driving and do what they can to avoid accidents,” he added.

Motorcycle and scooter operators under age 18 are required to wear a helmet, Despain said.

“But obviously, as a police department, we would encourage everybody to wear a helmet, regardless of their age, when riding a motorcycle,” he said.

This report is based on preliminary information provided by law enforcement or other emergency responders and may not contain the full scope of findings.

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2 Comments

  • Mesaizacd February 13, 2015 at 11:50 pm

    Should of taken a cab its cheaper

  • groanattack February 14, 2015 at 8:18 am

    You are correct.

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