UPDATE: 4 kids, 4 adults killed in Utah sandstorm crash; UHP explains what happened

Local News
MONDAY 7/26/2021 12:02 p.m.

KANOSH, Utah (ABC4) – Authorities are outlining what they believe happened during a series of crashes Sunday in Millard County that left eight people dead, including some children.

Utah Highway Patrol says in addition to the eight people killed, 10 people were transported to area hospitals. Three of those people are in critical condition. All others transported had non-life-threatening injuries.

Five of the eight people killed were in one vehicle, two in another, and one was in a third vehicle.

Four of those killed were adults, and four were under the age of 15.

A total of 22 vehicles were involved in Sunday’s crashes after a sand or dust storm impaired visibility on the roadway around 4:30 p.m.

UHP says some minor crashes in the midst of the storm blocked the roadway. That started the series of crashes.

“A semi came in at a low speed and then rear-ended another vehicle and then, after that, there were three significant impacts that caused the fatalities and these severe injuries,” Sgt. Cameron Roden tells ABC4. “Multiple crashes after that, but the significant ones were the ones that happened after the semi that hit the [truck].”

According to UHP, two vehicles became wedged underneath the back of the semi’s trailer. These vehicles appear to have been hit from behind by another pickup. Another vehicle appears to have sideswiped the semi-trailer as well.

“Number one is speed – we can’t outdrive our ability to maneuver safely around hazards that could come in front of us. We have to slow our speeds,” Sgt. Roden says when asked about what to do in these situations.

For previous updates on this crash, scroll down.

Children among the 8 killed in Utah sandstorm crashes

MONDAY 7/26/2021 8:21 a.m.

KANOSH, Utah (ABC4) – Some of the eight killed in a series of crashes caused by a sandstorm in central Utah were children, according to an update from Utah Highway Patrol.

In a Monday statement, UHP reports five of the eight people killed in the crash were traveling in one vehicle. Two others killed were traveling together in another vehicle. The other person was in a third vehicle.

UHP says it appears 22 vehicles were involved in Sunday’s crashes, which occurred after high winds caused a sand or dust storm that impaired visibility on the roadway.

At least 10 people were taken to hospitals with injuries from the crashes.

Utah Highway Patrol shared the photos seen in the slideshow below of the crash scene.

The identities of those involved could be released as early as Monday afternoon.

Scroll down for continuing coverage of the crashes.

At least 7 dead after sandstorm causes series of crashes in central Utah

SUNDAY 7/25/2021 9:15 p.m.

KANOSH, Utah (ABC4) – Troopers have confirmed a 7th person has died following multiple crashes after a sandstorm in Millard County.

Three people remain in critical condition.

“It’s very tragic, it’s very hard to see the loss of life, and the families and the people affected,” said Sgt. Cameron Roden, of Sunday night’s scene. “There’s still lots of crews out here, on-scene, still actively working the scene. I-15 is still closed and will be at least for a couple of more hours.”

Utah Highway Patrol shared the photos seen in the slideshow below of the crash scene.

At least 20 vehicles were involved in Sunday’s crashes after high winds caused a sand or dust storm, impairing visibility on the roadway. UHP says the crash appeared to have happened around 4:30 p.m. on I-15 between the Meadow and Kanosh exits.

Kanosh is located about 157 miles south of Salt Lake City.

Viewer Austin Gunn shared the below photo of what appears to be the same sandstorm shortly before the crashes happened.

A view of the sandstorm in Millard County from the south at around 4 p.m. (Austin Gunn)

Utah Governor Spencer Cox released the following statement Sunday night: “We’re stunned and saddened by the horrific accidents in Millard County. We fervently pray for the loved ones of those who perished and for those fighting for their lives.”

Lt. Governor Deidre Henderson shared similar sentiments, saying, “I’m heartbroken for the victims of this horrific crash and their loved ones. This is devastating.”

The identities of those involved could be released as soon as Monday evening.

At least six people dead, numerous others injured in series of Millard County crashes

A view of the sandstorm in Millard County from the south at around 4 p.m. (Austin Gunn)
SUNDAY 7/25/2021 7:44 p.m.

KANOSH, Utah (ABC4) – At least six people are dead, and possibly others, after a sandstorm caused a series of crashes in Millard County.

The crashes happened just before 5 p.m. Sunday on I-15 near milepost 152 between the Meadow and Kanosh exits.

Utah Highway Patrol says it appears 20 vehicles were involved after high winds cause a sand or dust storm, causing impaired visibility on the roadway. The photo seen at the top of this story shows what appears to be the same storm shortly before the crash.

A series of crashes ensued, killing at least six people and sending at least three in critical condition to the hospital.

The names of the victims are not being released at this time.

Southbound traffic in the area has been shut down while northbound traffic through the area is partially open.

As of 7:45 p.m., I-15 is currently being diverted at the Meadow exit (Exit 358). Motorists are being directed into Meadow and then south on SR-133 into Kanosh. Traffic can then re-enter southbound I-15 at the Kanosh onramp (Exit 148). Southbound traffic through the area will be closed for several hours while UHP conducts its investigation.

ORIGINAL STORY: One dead, multiple injured in series of Utah crashes caused by sandstorm

SUNDAY 7/25/2021 5:56 p.m.

FILLMORE, Utah (ABC4) – At least one person is dead and an untold number of others are injured in a series of crashes in central Utah.

Utah Highway Patrol reports a sandstorm in Millard County caused the crashes east of Kanosh.

The crash happened just before 5 p.m. along I-15 between the Fillmore and Kanosh exits. It is unclear how many vehicles are involved.

Multiple ground and air ambulances are responding to transport victims. Troopers from Richfield and Beaver are being called in to assist.

Authorities fear more may be dead as a result of this crash.

The freeway is now shut down in both directions. Traffic can be seen backing up on I-15 near I-70/Cove Fort near Sulphurdale.

I-15 is being diverted at the Meadow exit, Exit 358

ABC4 is working to gather additional information and will update this story.

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