Driver with unsecured load leaves scene of 3-vehicle pileup

ST. GEORGE — Several people were sent to the hospital Monday afternoon following a three-vehicle pileup on Red Hills Parkway. The driver of a fourth vehicle with an unsecured load left the scene after debris fell from his vehicle, which police said led to the pileup.

Emergency personnel respond to the scene of a three-vehicle pileup on Red Hills Parkway, St. George, Utah, Oct. 9, 2017 | Photo by Joseph Witham, St. George News

St. George Police responded to the incident on Red Hills Parkway just east of where the road intersects with Bluff Street at 4 p.m.

“There was a vehicle with an unsecure load of debris – trees, grass – that kind of thing,” St. George Police Officer Aaron Bergquist said.

Some branches fell off the vehicle as it was eastbound on Red Hills Parkway, and someone exited the vehicle to pull the debris out of the roadway.

“This caused traffic behind it to slow down three cars back,” Bergquist said.

The driver of a white Chevrolet pickup truck didn’t have time to stop, Bergquist said, and crashed into an older-model Chevrolet pickup, which was pushed forward and crashed into a silver Honda passenger car.

The driver of the vehicle that the branches fell from left before police arrived and no one at the scene was able to provide the vehicle’s make or its license plate number.

“He dropped the load and didn’t stick around to make sure everyone was OK,” St. George Police Officer Tiffany Atkin said.

A pickup truck is towed from the scene of a three-vehicle pileup on Red Hills Parkway, St. George, Utah, Oct. 9, 2017 | Photo by Joseph Witham, St. George News

Medical personnel from Gold Cross Ambulance arrived to tend to those injured in the crash.

“We had several people transported. Nothing too serious that I know about,” Bergquist said of the injuries.

The driver of the white Chevrolet was cited for their role in the crash, Atkins said, but police are also asking the driver of the vehicle with an unsecured load to come forward for causing the slowdown that led to the pileup.

“Citation would go to the unsecured load,” Bergquist said, “but he took off before we got here.”

The white Chevrolet sustained heavy front-end damage and was towed away. The older Chevrolet pickup also sustained front-end damage, as well as a shattered rear window. The Honda’s rear end sustained minor damage and was able to be driven from the scene.

Emergency personnel from St. George Fire Department also responded to the incident.

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

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  • mmsandie October 10, 2017 at 8:17 am

    Well if they go to the landfill maybe they could have found the person dropping stuff off..but then again the driver of the not so secured load could have been illegal landscaper and wouldn,t never admit to his mistake.. i hope they find the person.

  • Caveat_Emptor October 10, 2017 at 8:40 am

    As written, it appears that the guys who took off had finished removing the debris that fell off their truck, from the roadway.
    The three car pile-up would be attributed to the other drivers following too closely, and the first in line Honda had been stopped because of the debris clean-up.
    The Putnam truck’s front end damage is a testament to how much structure has been removed from new trucks to save a few MPGs…….

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