MONA (ABC4 News) – This year someone out there will be sitting down to Thanksgiving dinner with their family because of the heroic actions of a Utah Highway Patrol trooper.
The crazy thing is that person will never know how lucky they were that Trooper Geoffrey Hall was on duty Friday night when a speeding van was going the wrong way on Interstate 15.
“Copy – northbound in the southbound lanes,” a dispatcher said over Trooper Hall’s radio.
His dashcam was recording Friday night at 11:46 as a dark-colored van was accelerating right at oncoming vehicles north of Nephi. Hall, a St. George native and Dixie State University graduate sped up with his lights and sirens on to warn oncoming traffic.
“I look across the median to see where he’s at and he’s actually keeping up with me and at this point I’m going about 110 miles per hour,” Trooper Hall told Behind The Badge. “At that point I realize that this needs to end and end very quickly before somebody gets killed…Most certainly somebody would have died if he hit somebody head-on going that fast.”
With no backup units anywhere near, Trooper Hall knew it was up to him to swerve into the path of the speeding van.
“I was pretty amped up I mean, I did have a lot of adrenaline going through me but at the same time, I felt really calm and collected about what needed to happen, what my duty was as a Trooper,” Trooper Hall said. “I turned into the crossover and I saw him coming and I guess I timed it just right.”
The van smashed into the front driver’s side of Hall’s patrol cruiser and came to a sudden stop.
“As I hit him, I just hoped that I wasn’t in the middle of the road,” Trooper Hall said. “Because I knew that there was oncoming traffic and I was hoping that we were in a position that they could make it around us and stop in time where I wasn’t going to get hit.”
Miraculously, neither Trooper Hall nor the driver of the van were seriously injured. 43-year-old Cory Roy White was arrested for DUI and reckless endangerment. According to the arrest report, he had methamphetamine in his system and an open container of alcohol. He told officers that he thought it was all a dream and that be believed Trooper Hall was trying to race him.
Now reflecting back, Hall says he’s not a hero, just a trooper.
“I did what needed to be done and how it needed to be done at that specific time and place to hopefully let someone get home safely and live another day,” Hall said. “The way I see law enforcement is part of our job is putting our lives on the line so other people can go home safely and arrive home safely and if that means putting my life in jeopardy then that’s what it’s going to take and I’m OK with that.”
Trooper Hall says he’ll be spending part of this Thanksgiving with his family…before he has to head out to patrol the highways of Juab County that night.
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