County approves funding for roadside barriers on Kolob Terrace Road

ST. GEORGE — In order to secure a measure of additional safety on Kolob Terrace Road, the Washington County Commission approved funding for barriers to be installed on parts of the roadside.

A Honda is discovered sitting upright at the bottom of a steep ravine off of Kolob Terrace Road. A woman’s body was also found in the vehicle, Washington County, Utah, July 6, 2017 | File photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

The project, which was approved for $291,000, will “be for the curves and such along the road to make it a little safer,” Rae Boyer, of the Washington County Clerk/Auditor’s Office, told the commission.

Washington County Commissioner Gil Almquist noted that some county residents may think $291,000 is a lot to spend on road barriers on Kolob Terrace Road, yet said it was worth it.

Kolob Terrace Road is “a very dangerous road actually that has claimed lives and is also dangerous for the numerous bikers,” Almquist said. “Since (COVID-19), biking has gone though the roof as far as people wanting to recreate and get around quicker. Biking on that road is an ever-increasing concern.”

Kolob Terrace Road previously underwent a project to widen it in parts and add other improvements from 2015-17.

In September 2015, a woman with a 2-year-old child in her car went off the road and rolled 50 feet down a steep embankment off Kolob Terrace Road. The child went through the ordeal largely unscathed while the woman was flown to Dixie Regional Medical Center for care after having to be cut out of her vehicle by first responders.

Another incident in July 2017 involved a fatality where a car rolled 300 feet from Kolob Terrace Road into a ravine.

Additional purchase requests the County Commission approved Tuesday included nearly $30,000 for two roadside message boards for the county’s roads department and $23,500 to cover the cost of COVID-19 testing for inmates at the Purgatory Correctional Facility.

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