Following too close leads to 2 crashes, 4 citations

Emergency personnel and police officers attend to drivers after a three-car collision on East St. George Boulevard, St. George, Utah, June 16, 2016 |Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — A three-car pileup triggered by a driver making a lane change during peak traffic hours on a congested St. George Boulevard kept emergency personnel busy late Thursday afternoon. Minutes later a similar accident occurred less than one mile from the first.

Just after 5:30 p.m. officers responded to a reported three-car collision on East St. George Boulevard near 1000 East. Upon arrival emergency personnel found the vehicles stopped near the median of St. George Boulevard and South 1000 East, St. George Police Public Information Officer Lona Trombley said.

UDOT Incident Management Team assists at accident scene on E. St. George Boulevard, St. George, Utah, June 16, 2016 |Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News
A UDOT Incident Management Team assists at an accident scene on East St. George Boulevard, St. George, Utah, June 16, 2016 |Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

The collision was triggered by an 18-year-old man driving a 2005 Volkswagen GTI, she said.

The driver was looking behind him as he attempted to change lanes, Trombley said, while at the same time traffic in front of him was slowing down.

Once the driver saw traffic slowing in front of him it was too late. Despite his efforts to slam on the brakes the man hit a white 2008 Ford pickup in front of him, launching that vehicle into a 2010 Honda minivan.

“The man driving the Volkswagen was trying to move over so he wasn’t in the lane designated for the freeway,” Trombley said, “but as he made sure he was clear to merge over from behind, traffic was slowing down right in front of him.”

The minivan, driven by a 35-year-old male, sustained minimal damage to the rear of the vehicle. The driver reported no injuries, Trombley said.

The pickup sustained extensive front and rear damage from being hit and then launched into the bumper of the minivan, she said, but the 68-year-old driver of the pickup told emergency personnel he was uninjured. The man’s vehicle was rendered inoperable after the crash and towed from the scene.

Dark blue Hyundai is towed after accident on Red Cliffs Drive, St. George, Utah, June 16, 2016 |Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News
A dark blue Hyundai is towed after an accident on Red Cliffs Drive, St. George, Utah, June 16, 2016 |Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

The man driving the Volkswagen that triggered the collision was cited for following too close and for not having insurance. His vehicle was impounded after the accident.

All drivers were wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash.

Traffic was heavy when the accident occurred and was affected for approximately 45 minutes while emergency personnel tended to the scene.

The St. George Police Department, St. George Fire Department and the Utah Department of Transportation Incident Management Team responded to the collision.

Minutes after the first crash was reported another collision on Red Cliffs Drive sent police officers to an accident scene that involved another driver following too close, Trombley said.

Officers responded to a two-car collision at the intersection of Red Cliffs Drive and North Eastridge Drive where they found two vehicles, a dark blue Hyundai sedan driven by an 18-year-old female, and a silver Toyota Camry.

Trombley said the 58-year-old man driving the Toyota was traveling westbound on Red Cliffs Drive when he was struck from behind as he slowed down nearing an intersection. The driver of the Hyundai was not able to stop in time and hit the Toyota, she said.

No injuries were reported and the teen driver of the Hyundai was cited for following too close and for not having proof of insurance.

Trombley said the teen told officers she was insured, but didn’t have any documentation of coverage in the vehicle at the time of the crash.

Officers were unable to confirm her insurance status at the scene despite their efforts, she said.

That citation can be cleared once proof of coverage is verified, Trombley said.

No injuries were reported, and traffic was impacted for approximately 30 minutes while officers tended 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.

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Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.





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  • Dolly June 17, 2016 at 11:28 pm

    Two 18-year old drivers, both following too closely…aren’t they teaching about safe following distance in Driver’s Training? Driving anywhere near the high schools before or after school session is terrifying – it’s a chaotic scene of tail-gating and lane-weaving. That poor guy minding his own business gets rear-ended and of course the teen driver has no insurance. Hope it costs a fortune to get that car out of impound!

  • .... June 18, 2016 at 8:37 am

    Welcome to St George

    • shaneomack June 18, 2016 at 4:42 pm

      So Dolly it sounds like other than being named after a horse you have never made any mistakes. It is very unfortunate that any of these folks had to deal with these situations. While im sure no one wanted to be dealing with this at the same time no one is dead and i am sure lessons where learned. While I think it is in poor judgement for anyone to drive without proper insurance I have to admit that your juvenile dig at the end of your comment “that you hope it costs a fortune for the kid to get his car” really speaks more to your ignorance and poor decision making. What if that driver has a family? What if he has kids? what if that car is the only way he can get to work or to the store to get his family groceries? So you had no personal involvement in any of this yet you felt compelled to show everyone your total lack of human compassion and your firm grip on an astounding low IQ. Everyone has the right to their opinion, even people named after farm animals but that doesn’t mean you should be throwing your two cents into the discussion when its highly debatable that you could even count to two much less contribute anything meaningful or useful to the situation. Well Dolly I guess at this point I could follow your lead and wish something hurtful to happen to you even though I dont know you but instead I choose to take the higher path and actually give you some useful advice. In life Dolly if you don’t know maybe, just maybe try to understand the gravity of what you say before you open your mouth and spew ridiculous nonsense. Just because you where named after a horse doesn’t mean you have to act like one.
      I hope everyone involved in these accidents are healthy and able to get their lives back on track as quickly as possible. It is too bad that your vehicles sustained damage and it will no doubt be inconvenient, however if it starts to be too much you all can say to yourself “this sucks but at least my parents didn’t name me after a horse.
      P.S. Hey Dolly, I got two words for you…

      • ladybugavenger June 19, 2016 at 10:48 pm

        I cant stop laughing at your comment about a horse and farm animal. That’s about all I comprehended lol funny stuff right there

  • ladybugavenger June 18, 2016 at 2:20 pm

    Teenagers, download the Driving APP now! dang kids

    • shaneomack June 18, 2016 at 6:43 pm

      I agree. So while the kids are downloading that app why don’t we have all the blue haired senior citizens that look to be between 125 – 165 years old maybe quite driving when you can’t see over the steering wheel or your afraid to drive over 15 miles an hour. Does everyone over 65 have to drive everywhere with their left blinker on? Is that some sort of old person law or rule?

      • .... June 19, 2016 at 12:20 pm

        Hey Shaneomac ..that’s quit driving. not quite driving. now go back to watching your so called professional wrestling lmao !

        • shaneomack June 20, 2016 at 7:19 am

          Ah Hahahaha! If you are insinuating that I misspelled the word unfortunately that is not the case. Auto correct isnt always right, but Im sure if auto correct had feeling you probably hurt them so congratulations! As far as the end of your ridiculous amusing passive aggressive remarks I really have no idea what to say other than I dont watch TV. But that was a nice try.
          “ladybugavenger” really? Are you a super hero? What a great name! Im sure all the wrong doers in town are incredibly nervous to find out that there isnt just a hero, not even just a super hero, THE ladybugavenger is patrolling the city. She can’t fly, she doesn’t have x ray vision but she is coming after you if your spelling is wrong. I know the very last thing I had ever intended was to incur the wrath of someone “special” enough to dub them self The ladybugavenger. because you are kind enough to offer me your opinion on what I should spend my time watching I feel like the only right thing to do is to return the favor. Why don’t you keep your limited intelligence to your self and go look into a mirror, look right into your sunken in dead eyes and ask yourself why you are so miserable and people go out of their way to avoid you and any contact with you.
          This whole keyboard warrior stuff I am sure is great for you but it really doesn’t do much for me. Ill tell you what, If you ever want to talk to someone face to face that will tell you the truth you let me know avenger and Ill buy you some prune juice or apple sauce or what ever it is your body can still digest and. Have a super day super hero.

          • .... June 20, 2016 at 10:17 am

            It’s a Bird ! It’s a Plane ! no its super Shaneomack ! LOL !

          • ladybugavenger June 20, 2016 at 1:51 pm

            well at least you didn’t spell Mormon, Morman lol

    • .... June 18, 2016 at 10:38 pm

      They can’t download the app. They’re to busy driving and texting

      • ladybugavenger June 19, 2016 at 10:49 pm

        They should be reading and driving lol

  • Bob June 19, 2016 at 12:30 pm

    this will be an expensive lesson for both idiots. maybe next time they learn to put down the iphones and watch the road

    • .... June 20, 2016 at 10:14 am

      You need to find your meds !

    • shaneomack June 20, 2016 at 10:19 am

      The lesson to be learned from this bob is that had your parents had the foresight to buy the contraception none of us would be subject to your completely worthless point of view.

    • shaneomack June 20, 2016 at 3:49 pm

      Hey Bob. I was wondering something. How did it feel that very first time when you found out your mom and dad are related? Does it make family reunions weird or is it a great place for you to meet woman at? Listen, didn’t your parents ever teach you to shut your mouth until spoken to? And yet here you are a half a moron and that is the good half calling people names like your in elementary school. Are you upset that you can’t turn a computer on, or you have no idea how to operate a phone. Let’s be real Bob, you very likely can’t even walk and talk at the same time. You should do yourself a favor and save all your witty opinions for impressing all the girls at your next family reunion. You never know you may even met a nice fellow named Oh I don’t know, maybe Neal. Wouldn’t that be super? Instead of being just Bob you could be one half of Neal and Bob or bob and neal. Something tells me your only going to get to the first by willingly doing the last. Hahahaha!!! Cheers Jerky!

      • Bob June 20, 2016 at 6:54 pm


        why don’t you just:

        1-put down the iphone
        2-pay attention to the road
        3-buy insurance

        try not to kill the next one u hit, at least…

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