Driver escapes serious injury when pickup rolls across 3 lanes of traffic on I-15

Northbound traffic is backed up while responders tend to rollover on I-15 near Exit 36 Wednesday evening, Washington County, Utah, Aug. 23, 2017 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

WASHINGTON COUNTY – A blown tire sent a pickup truck crashing into the concrete median before the truck was sent into a rollover and skidded across several lanes of travel on Interstate 15 Wednesday evening.

Shortly after 6 p.m. law enforcement and emergency personnel were dispatched to a single-vehicle rollover on I-15 northbound near Exit 36 involving a white Toyota pickup truck that landed on its side in the middle of the interstate.

Utah Highway Patrol assists when white Toyota pickup truck rolls on I-15 near Exit 36 Wednesday, Washington County, Utah, Aug. 23, 2017 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

Upon arrival, responders found the Toyota on its side with the driver’s side against the asphalt, blocking both the No. 1 and No. 2 lanes, Utah Highway Patrol Trooper Grant Hintze said.

The driver told law enforcement that the front driver’s-side tire on his pickup truck blew as he headed north in the middle lane of the interstate, Hintze said, which sent the pickup careening to the left and into the concrete median.

The truck struck the median multiple times until the wheels caught the end of the barrier, the trooper said, which sent it up in the air before rolling back toward the roadway and finally came to rest on its side blocking multiple lanes.

“The final contact with the barrier rotated the truck up on the driver’s side,” Hintze said, “and sent it rolling back towards the road before it landed on it’s side and skidded across the roadway, and came to rest pretty much in the middle of all three lanes at first.”

The front windshield of the Toyota pickup is shattered in the rollover on I-15 Wednesday evening, Washington County, Utah, Aug. 23, 2017 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

The Utah Department of Transportation’s Incident Management Team also responded to the crash and once on scene was able to hook the Toyota to a cable and drag it off the left-hand shoulder, which opened up another lane of traffic.

Traffic was then diverted into two right-hand lanes which eased the backup of vehicles that stretched as far as the eye could see.

The driver suffered minor injuries in the crash, including a cut on his finger and soreness, the trooper said, and the man was advised to go to the hospital if that became worse.

“The driver sustained only minor injuries thanks to the truck’s side airbags and of course wearing his seat belt,” Hintze said.

“I’m a praying man,” the Toyota driver said, “so I’m just thankful I made it out of that okay, and at least now I can laugh about it.”

Traffic was impacted for approximately 30 minutes, Hintze said, and then all lanes were reopened for traffic to resume. The truck sustained extensive damage and was towed from the scene.

UHP, Washington County Sheriff’s Office, UDOT Incident Management Team, Hurricane Valley Fire and Ambulance all responded and tended to the scene.

This report is based on statements from law enforcement or other emergency responders and may not contain the full scope of findings.

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Email: cblowers@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2017, all rights reserved.

 

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4 Comments

  • Caveat_Emptor August 24, 2017 at 8:24 am

    Survivable thanks to safety technology. This could have turned out a lot worse.

  • John August 24, 2017 at 1:41 pm

    and the 80 mph speed limit has nothing to do with it…..hmmmmm?

  • utahdiablo August 24, 2017 at 9:35 pm

    Oh, 80 mph? …along with the hot summer temps on the roadway pavement is a tires best friend right Udot??…… Aw heck, move that darn slow poke 80 mph up to 85 – 90 as most folk already do that speed….and we have to move commerce!!!!

  • Mike P. August 25, 2017 at 10:26 am

    I don’t always understand these “I had a blowout” accidents. Maybe I’m just lucky but I’ve been driving for 50 years and have experienced many “Blowouts” at speed and have never lost control of my vehicle. The accidents I’ve witnessed in person that involved the dreaded “blowout” was usually caused buy the driver freekin’ out and over correcting. Glad this guy made it.

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