After fatal crash, Utah Highway Patrol reminds Utahns to slow down

Local News

LOGAN, Utah (ABC4) – A car accident in Logan Canyon Tuesday morning left one woman dead and two others injured, including a child.

Utah Highway Patrol continues to investigate the accident and is considering weather to be a factor in the crash. Now, UHP is reminding Utahns to slow down and take extra precautions when driving in winter weather.

“Driving is a full-time job,” Utah Highway Patrol Public Information Officer Sgt. Cameron Roden says. “We need to make sure that our attention and all our faculties are focused on driving, especially in poor conditions,” he adds.

According to Sgt. Roden, around 8 o’clock Tuesday morning, a woman lost her life while driving in Logan Canyon. He explained, “The driver of the vehicle lost control, they ended up hitting both barriers on both sides of the roadway before they spun sideways in front of a westbound pickup truck.”

Sgt. Roden says the woman was driving eastbound on U.S. Highway 89 when this happened. He said the pickup struck the passenger side of the woman’s Dodge Caravan. The woman died at the scene. The driver of the pickup was taken to the hospital with minor injuries. There was also a child in the Dodge Caravan. Sgt. Roden told ABC4 the child was taken to the hospital with serious injuries, but that these injuries were not life-threatening.

Highway 89 was closed down for a few hours as UHP investigated the accident. The investigation will continue and for now, weather is being considered a factor.

In areas like Sardine Canyon and Logan Canyon, winding roads, mixed with poor weather conditions, often lead to accidents. When a winter storm is expected to hit those areas, UHP prepares for a busy shift. “We do tend to gear up a little bit more; getting more troopers on standby for potential callouts,” added Sgt. Roden.

When accidents do happen, roads are closed to collect evidence. In areas like Logan Canyon this can be extra frustrating for commuters due to the fact that there are not many additional routes to take if the area is closed down.

For that reason, Sgt. Roden said officers will work as quickly as possible to collect all the evidence they need for the investigation. He explained that they work as methodically as they can. This often means officers will collect evidence one lane at a time so that traffic can slowly resume in the area. He said when traffic is first shut down officers worry about preserving evidence and directing traffic so that additional accidents don’t take place.

“We also try to use social media to get the message out as quickly as possible,” Roden adds.

UHP is reminding drivers about the importance of being alert while driving in winter conditions to help reduce the number of accidents. Sgt. Roden told ABC4 it is the same message every year, but one that needs to be repeated.

“(We need to) slow our speed and only travel as we can safely see and react to any potential hazards,” he said.

He then explained that during the winter months, many accidents are caused by drivers following each other too closely. He said often during storms, drivers will follow one another with the same amount of space between cars that one would see during perfect weather. This does not leave drivers enough time to react during wet conditions.

Roden says another major factor in winter crashes is faulty vehicle equipment, advising drivers to check their tires and windshield wipers before heading out during a storm. These suggestions are simple but Sgt. Roden says they save lives.

“It’s a real tragedy, especially where we have fatal crashes like this. Our heart goes out to the family that has lost a loved one today,” Sgt. Roden said.

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