ST. GEORGE – Northbound traffic on Interstate 15 was disrupted Wednesday afternoon after a car crashed into the cable barrier in the median around milepost 9.
The crash occurred around 2:20 p.m., when a semitrailer allegedly ran a gray Chevrolet Impala off the road while changing lanes, Utah Highway Patrol Sgt. Dan Ferguson said.
The Impala sustained “pretty good damage,” Ferguson said. The driver was unharmed, though shaken up by the crash, he said.
“It could have been a lot worse,” Ferguson said.
The car was disabled and had to be towed from the scene.
After the Impala crashed, the semitrailer was stopped near the exit, requiring UHP troopers to be stationed at two different spots on the interstate. The semitrailer driver contended he didn’t see the Impala when he changed lanes, and he said he used his blinker, Ferguson said. However, a witness who was driving behind the Impala and saw the crash claimed the semitrailer never used a blinker, he said.
The semitrailer driver was cited for an unsafe lane change.
Travel on I-15 was reduced to one lane while UHP troopers investigated and cleared the accident.
“It really wasn’t that bad of an accident,” Ferguson said. However, part of what added to traffic delays were people using the emergency lane in an attempt to bypass the backup. People were driving in the emergency lane at speeds of up to 50 mph. This is something Ferguson said he watches out for while at crash scenes.
For the most part, motorists were cooperative. The few that cruised by in the emergency lane, though, were ultimately stopped and made to wait until backed up traffic was cleared, Ferguson said. None of the emergency lane-runners were cited, he said.
“You don’t use the emergency lane unless otherwise directed,” Ferguson said.
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