LEEDS – Seat belts and airbags helped a northern Utah couple escape serious injury in an accident on Interstate 15 Friday morning near milepost 23 in Leeds.
At about 9:47 a.m., a couple driving a gold Toyota Camry were traveling northbound on I-15 in the left lane, abreast with a red pickup truck, Utah Highway Patrol Trooper Grant Hintze said.
The truck started changing lanes right into the Camry, which swerved left to avoid being hit, Hintze said. The Camry went off the left shoulder and then traveled back across both lanes of traffic, striking a concrete barrier head-on on the right side of the roadway. The Camry was heavily damaged.
“Both passengers in the gold sedan, an elderly couple, were wearing seat belts,” Hintze said, “and, with the airbags, had very, very minor injuries.”
The couple declined to be transported to the hospital and instead caught a ride back to St. George with the tow truck driver, Hintze said.
“They did what they were supposed to do – they were wearing their seat belts in conjunction with that airbag. It really saved them from getting really hurt, because that was actually a really bad accident,” Hintze said. “Seat belts, seat belts, seat belts – that’s all we can say.”
Hintze said the troopers had very little information about the red pickup truck and have not been able to locate the driver of the truck at the time of this publication.
The pickup truck is considered the cause of the accident, “making a really improper lane change,” Hintze said. If found, the driver of the truck will be cited.
No citations were issued at the scene in connection with the accident.
One lane of I-15 was closed down for about 30 minutes while the accident was attended to. Being able to keep one lane open kept the traffic delay to a minimum, Hintze said.
“The tow company, that’s what we rely on to get out of here quick,” Hintze said. “They got up here very fast, so we’re very appreciative of that.”
Utah Highway Patrol, Dixie Auto Body & Towing and Leeds Area Fire and Rescue responded to the scene.
This report is based on preliminary information provided by UHP at the scene and may not contain the full scope of findings.
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Ed. note: Corrected to include Leeds Area Fire and Rescue.
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