TOOELE, Utah (ABC4) — One person was seriously hurt and several others injured after a semi-truck rolled out of control Friday down Main Street in Tooele, crashing into more than two dozen cars and starting a fire at an auto dealership.
Lt. Jeremy Hansen, a spokesperson for Tooele police, said the semi was rolling northbound on Main Street around 1:45 p.m. when an apparent brake failure prevented it from stopping.
The truck smashed into five vehicles as it careened through Main Street intersections before crashing into the Tooele Motor Company on 1141 N Main Street.
The truck damaged 27 vehicles in the dealership, and started the building on fire. Flames also spread to some of the vehicles in the parking lot.
Tony Garner, who was in one of the cars hit by the truck, said he feared for his life as the semi approached.
“I just closed my eyes and prayed to God that I’m coming to heaven, and be ready for me,” he said. “He just plowed through all of us.”
The crash left 11 people injured, and emergency crews brought most of them to an area hospital for treatment, police said. One of the injured was airlifted to a Salt Lake City-area hospital in critical condition.
Firefighters were able to knock down the flames at the dealership in roughly 30 minutes. Still, fire crews remained on the scene checking hotspots in the roof of the dealership.
As to what led to the crash, Hansen said, “it looks like possible mechanical failure of the brakes.”
He added that the semi driver was unharmed and was in the process of being questioned by police. There’s been no evidence so far to suggest the driver was impaired.
Both directions of Main Street were closed in the area around the crash as Utah Department of Transportation crews investigated. The road has since reopened.