UPDATE – 8:49 p.m: The traffic backups have cleared.
UPDATE – 8:26 p.m: Nevada Highway Patrol has opened both southbound lanes and traffic is beginning to clear up.
UPDATE – 7:21 p.m: Some motorists have become upset over the traffic delay and even running out of fuel, Bottoms said, adding that he is doing everything he can to assist in keeping traffic moving. The highway remains restricted in Nevada and backed up 10 miles in Arizona.
UPDATE – 4:50 p.m: As the traffic back up continues to grow, the estimated drive time from St. George to Mesquite, Nevada, is more than two hours.
UPDATE – 3:55 p.m: Southbound I-15 traffic through the Virgin River Gorge construction zone is backed up for 7 miles with traffic being backed up an additional 7 miles between Mesquite, Nevada, and Little Field, Arizona, due to a fatal collision.
MOHAVE COUNTY, Ariz. – Motorists traveling southbound on Interstate 15 along the Virgin River Gorge Sunday should expect long traffic delays due to heavy traffic volume through the construction zone as well as a car-versus-semitrailer fatal collision near the Arizona-Nevada State Line.
Around 11:30 a.m. MST, southbound traffic was already backed up for 2 miles, and expected to grow to around 5-8 miles in length throughout the day, Arizona Department of Public Safety Highway Patrol Sgt. John Bottoms said.
At 2:13 p.m. MST, reports of a collision involving a semitrailer and a car began coming in. Preliminary information indicates the semi has gone up in flames and Mercy Air has been requested to the scene. St. George News will have more information on this collision as it becomes available.
At 2:55 p.m. MST, Bottoms confirmed there has been a fatality as a result of the collision, adding that the crash has traffic severely backed up and southbound travel is restricted to the emergency lane to get around the scene of the collision.
Alternate route and tips for drivers
Those seeking to avoid the construction work in the Virgin River Gorge may take Highway 91 as an alternate route. The highway bypasses the Gorge entirely, intersecting with I-15 at Littlefield, Arizona to the south and connecting to St. George at the north via Santa Clara and Sunset Boulevard. See map included in this article.
- To stay up to date with the latest highway conditions around the state, visit the ADOT Traveler Information Center at AZ511.gov or call 511; outside of Arizona dial 888-411-ROAD (7623)
- For more information about this project, visit the website
- ADOT completes series of bridge projects, easing Gorge traffic restrictions
- ADOT begins largest bridge reconstruction project in Virgin River Gorge, Bridge No. 6 on I-15
- ADOT Advisory: Roadwork on bridges continues, motorists reminded to plan for delays
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