Driver runs red light, sending 1 car spinning, slams second vehicle into pole

White Ford Pickup truck and silver Toyota 4-Runner are smashed into pole during three-vehicle crash on S. 270 East and E. Riverside Drive Friday morning, St. George, Utah, Dec. 8, 2017 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Commuters encountered a three-vehicle crash blocking a busy intersection after a driver allegedly ran a red light, setting off a chain reaction that sent one driver to the hospital and left two demolished vehicles, blocked lanes and scattered debris that kept responders busy in 28 degree weather Friday morning.

Numerous emergency personnel respond to three-vehicle crash on S. 270 East and E. Riverside Drive Friday morning, St. George, Utah, Dec. 8, 2017 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

Shortly before 8 a.m., officers and emergency personnel were dispatched to a three-vehicle crash at the intersection of S. 270 East and E. Riverside Drive involving a silver Toyota 4-Runner, a white Ford pickup truck and a white Toyota Corolla.

Upon arrival, responders found the Corolla severely damaged in the middle of the intersection, blocking both westbound lanes of Riverside Drive, while the 4-Runner and pickup truck were found smashed into a traffic pole blocking the southbound lane of S. 270 East.

Traffic pole is extensively damaged when it is struck during three-vehicle crash on S. 270 East and E. Riverside Drive Friday morning, St. George, Utah, Dec. 8, 2017 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

Emergency medical personnel also found an injured driver inside of the 4-Runner who was transported to Dixie Regional Medical Center for evaluation and treatment. No other injuries were reported, police said.

During the investigation officers learned from witnesses that the 4-Runner was heading west on E. Riverside Drive towards Bluff Street when the driver failed to stop at a red light, St. George Police Sgt. Wade Johnson said.

“Two independent witnesses and one of the drivers involved told officers that the driver in the 4-Runner ran the light,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Corolla heading north through the intersection from S. 270 East was struck by the 4-Runner, which sent the vehicle spinning in the middle of the intersection while the 4-Runner continued on until it struck the pickup truck waiting to make a right-hand turn from S. 270 East onto Riverside Drive. The second impact spun the truck around and sent both vehicles smashing into the traffic signal pole situated on the corner.

Shortly after the accident employers arrived on scene to check on their employees. One such worker, who was driving the pickup truck involved in the crash, said he was making the first delivery of the day when the incident occurred. Fortunately, he said, the boxes he was delivering remained undamaged and he was uninjured.

The driver of the 4-Runner was later cited for failing to obey a traffic control device, police said.

The St. George Police Department and the St. George Fire Department responded to the incident, along with Gold Cross Ambulance, which had two ambulances on scene.

This report is based on statements from police or other emergency responders and may not contain the full scope of findings.

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  • tcrider December 8, 2017 at 1:28 pm

    I wonder why the city of Saint George doesn’t use their resources of cameras at traffic lights at many intersections and
    start doing automated citations for people running lights , stop signs, the hicksters making their black plumes with their
    little diesel trucks, (also known as penis compensators ).
    Other cities with limited resources for law enforcement, or other cities where law enforcement do not wish to be very proactive, prefer to use automated systems that are very efficient and generate excellent revenue for the city.

  • Who December 8, 2017 at 2:16 pm

    Cities that used cameras were sued and had to pay out large sums of money. (Is why)

    • tcrider December 8, 2017 at 2:43 pm

      does not matter, in Utah every entity of government is sue proof, thats why unions
      don’t work here, even if they could sue, there would be so much revenue flowing in
      from all the citations, it would still be a big money maker, trust me.

  • Alisa December 8, 2017 at 2:52 pm

    This is WAY TOO MANY car accidents!
    It seems to me that each of them could have been easily avoided…
    Please be careful out there.
    We have too many children in our community for people to be driving so irresponsibly.

  • utahdiablo December 9, 2017 at 11:03 am

    Ahhhh…Christmas is in the air….and none of this will stop until the fines and citations are raised beyond belief….only then will these knuckleheads stop doing this

  • .... December 10, 2017 at 12:29 pm

    I hope the pole will be OK

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