ST. GEORGE — A pickup truck crashed into the back of a semitractor-trailer at a “high rate of speed,” after falling asleep while driving down Interstate 15 Sunday morning.
Emergency responders were dispatched to a crash on I-15 near mile marker 2 just north of Littlefield, Arizona, around 8 a.m. Sunday. The crash involved a white Chevrolet pickup truck and a fully-loaded semi, Arizona Highway Patrol trooper Tom Callister said.
The 41-year-old driver sustained possible fractures and other injuries and was transported to Mesa View Hospital by ambulance for treatment.
At the time of the crash, the driver of the Chevrolet was heading south on I-15 from Cedar City to pick up a friend in Las Vegas when she fell asleep, Callister said.
The pickup was traveling behind a semi in the right-hand lane. When she fell asleep, her vehicle struck the back of the second trailer at full speed, her car stopping in the right lane and blocking traffic.
The driver of the semi pulled his truck off the interstate and stopped on the right-hand shoulder. The pickup was pushed out of the roadway by a trooper using his patrol vehicle.
Callister said the pickup was going at least 100 mph when it struck the back of the trailer.
The force of the impact was so severe it pushed the front of the pickup back toward windshield. The driver of the semi told troopers his cruise-control was set at 72 mph at the time of the incident, and even with two fully-loaded trailers, he was pushed back into his seat when the collision occurred.
The pickup was extensively damaged and towed from the roadway. The damage to the semi was confined to the steel under-ride bar of the second trailer, and the driver was able to continue his trip after the scene was clear.
The driver of the Chevrolet was later cited for driving at speeds not prudent for conditions.
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