Woman charged with DUI after crashing into boulders on Red Hills Parkway

Emergency responders attend to a woman who crashed her car on Red Hills Parkway, St. George, Utah, Dec. 23, 2014 | Photo by Holly Coombs, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — A woman was transported to Dixie Regional Medical Center Tuesday afternoon after being involved in a single-vehicle accident on Red Hills Parkway in St. George, approximately 2 miles east of the Red Hills Parkway Interchange.

Just before 2 p.m., a 57-year-old woman was traveling eastbound on Red Hills Parkway when she crashed into a group of big boulders in the median, St. George Police Sgt. Spencer Holmes said.

Gold Cross Ambulance responders prepare to transport a woman to the hospital following a single-car collision, St. George, Utah, Dec. 23, 2014 | Photo by Holly Coombs, St. George News
Gold Cross Ambulance responders prepare to transport a woman to the hospital following a single-car collision, St. George, Utah, Dec. 23, 2014 | Photo by Holly Coombs, St. George News

The woman was believed to be driving under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance, he said.

There was minimal damage to the Ford Taurus the woman was driving, and crashing into the rocks actually prevented her from traveling into westbound traffic, Holmes said.

“Ever since those boulders were put there, it has really helped a lot with collisions not becoming worse than they could have been,” he said. “By people crashing into the boulders, they don’t go across the median and crash into oncoming traffic.”

One lane of eastbound traffic was shut down during the investigation into and clearing of the accident, Holmes said. The woman was transported to the hospital by Gold Cross Ambulance.

The woman was cited for improper lane travel and driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, Holmes said. Because the woman was still receiving medical treatment at about 5 p.m., more than three hours after the incident occurred, she was cited and released to free up waiting police officers to attend to other duties. When a DUI with an accident occurs, according to information from the St. George Police Department, the person charged with the DUI must be transported to the hospital for a full medical screening before being booked into jail, and an officer must be present with the detainee throughout the process. It is not unusual in a case like this, according to information from SGPD, for the person to be charged and released so they can be treated medically. Though she was not booked into jail, the woman will still be subject to the same legal process for her DUI charge. (See ed. note)

 

The St. George Police Department, St. George Fire Department, Gold Cross Ambulance and City of St. George Streets Department attended to the scene.

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

Ed. note: Additional information added for clarity regarding DUI charge and release.

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Email: hcoombs@stgnews.com

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2014, all rights reserved.

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17 Comments

  • Evil twins mommy December 23, 2014 at 11:06 pm

    The most important thing is that the woman is going to be okay. I am really impressed with the way the SGPD handled the situation as well as the other emergency responders… enjoy the holidays everyone

    • Steve December 24, 2014 at 8:32 am

      the most important thing is that she didn’t kill anybody. Hopefully this stupid drunk learns a lesson.

      • Jeff Hunt December 27, 2014 at 11:56 am

        I agree with the “didn’t kill someone”, and that it was stupid, but this is my mom and she wasn’t drunk she had taken two sleeping pills forgot she took them in the morning and took two more… Unlike most people in southern Utah you have to make a sound judgment based on fact not assumptions.

  • Joe Smith December 24, 2014 at 12:06 am

    “Ever since those boulders were put there, it has really helped a lot with collisions not becoming worse than they could have been,” he said. “By people crashing into the boulders, they don’t go across the median and crash into oncoming traffic.”

    This is a good summary of how bad st george drivers really are. Crashing into boulders–sounds like more than a few cars have hit these boulders…

  • Koolaid December 24, 2014 at 1:38 am

    No pictures of the boulders? Are any boy scout leaders arriving to topple them back into place?

  • Dana December 24, 2014 at 5:22 am

    Holly, your writing has improved. Some of the sentences are a little long winded. They can easily be broken into two or three sentences without seeming choppy. However, you’re a much better writer than a few others here on St. George News.

  • Rocky December 24, 2014 at 7:52 am

    Keep your car on the asphalt, don’t text, don’t drink and drive, and your car won’t hit any boulders. Problem solved. See, that was easy.

    • Koolaid December 24, 2014 at 9:30 am

      No kidding. Who does she think she is, some washington county deputy?

  • Richard C. December 24, 2014 at 8:09 am

    There must be a new law or SGPD are covering for this lady, what the … you mean since it was after 5 pm you couldn’t book her into Purgatory. The author should have sensed something smells about that and did some digging! Please find out why Purgatory and the SGPD close after 5 pm. From the pictures the lady walked to the ambulance so she wasn’t that hurt. Also find find out how many DUI’s w/accident they have just written a citation for. I sense the SGPD is covering for someone. Let’s see some real journalism and get the real story here!
    Ed. ellipsis …

    • Cami Cox Jim Cami Cox Jim December 24, 2014 at 1:26 pm

      Hi Richard. When someone is taken to the hospital after a DUI/accident, many tests have to be done that can take several hours. In a case like that, when the person is not a dangerous criminal, they may be cited and released so an officer doesn’t have to remain at the hospital for hours while they are being tested/treated. The woman was not let off the hook — she was cited for the DUI and still subject to the same legal process for the DUI charge. See our editor’s note above.
      Cami Cox Jim
      Assistant Editor

      • Richard C December 24, 2014 at 4:39 pm

        I never said she was let off the hook! After an initial blood draw and refusal or failure of field sobriety test not sure why an officer would need to be there. Saying cite and release for DUI is common is BS, read the arrest records at Purgatory. I guess unlike others the public will never know who this danger to society is. Picking and choosing whom to reveal is telling.

        • Cami Cox Jim Cami Cox Jim December 24, 2014 at 5:26 pm

          According to the SGPD, it’s policy that a DUI detainee involved in an accident has to be taken to the hospital, examined and treated before they can be transported to jail. What they told us is it’s fairly common, when an accident has occurred and the detainee has to be at the hospital for a long period of time, the person will often be released from police custody to be treated for injuries but will still face charges for the DUI.

  • Utahn December 24, 2014 at 11:16 am

    Caught between a rock and a hard place.

  • Joe Smith December 24, 2014 at 12:38 pm

    I think it’s about time that we place boulders in the median of every road in dixie. We will use the ol’ Darwin method to weed the worst of dixie’s drivers out of the gene pool…

  • Colby December 24, 2014 at 3:25 pm

    let me get this straight. If someone is stopped for a suspected dui and is over the limit car is towed and they go to jail, if you actually crash and hurt yourself you get to skip jail and no bail money. Wow !!!!!!

  • M and M cookies December 24, 2014 at 6:36 pm

    A DUI in st. Gorge , Mormon territory.. He couldn,t have been Mormon, maybe too much 5hr energy or mt. Dew…

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