CEDAR CITY — A 3-year-old girl was killed in a rollover crash on Interstate 15 Sunday afternoon.
The incident occurred at approximately 3:15 p.m. in the southbound lanes near mile marker 61, just south of Cedar City’s north I-15 exit.
Utah Highway Patrol Sgt. Ryan Bauer said the vehicle, a silver 1993 Toyota 4Runner, was heading south on the freeway with three occupants: an adult male driver, an adult female passenger, both in their 20s, and a 3-year-old female child, who was sitting behind the front seats.
“The baby is sitting in the back and she starts to cry. So, the driver reaches around to try to give her a bottle or cup,” Bauer told Cedar City News. “When he does that, the car goes over on the right shoulder. When he realizes that, he tries to pull it back to the left, which causes the car to start sliding out of control, across the freeway.”
After striking the left guardrail, the vehicle flipped over, coming to rest on its driver’s side. The 3-year-old child, who Bauer said was not properly restrained, was ejected from the car onto the roadway, causing fatal injuries.
The female passenger, who was in the front seat, sustained serious injuries that Bauer described as “pretty major trauma to her right side and her right arm.” The woman was airlifted to Dixie Regional Medical Center in St. George for treatment.
The driver, meanwhile, sustained minor cuts and abrasions.
Traffic in the I-15 southbound lanes was either completely blocked or restricted to a single lane for more than two hours as responders worked to clear the scene.
In addition to multiple Utah Highway Patrol troopers, personnel from Iron County Sheriff’s Office, Cedar City Police, Enoch City Police, Cedar City Fire Department and Gold Cross Ambulance also responded to the scene.
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