North Bluff Street collisions, 2 days 2 cars 2 semis


ST. GEORGE – Two days in a row, semis and cars collided on Bluff Street at 500 N in St. George. Lessons may be learned from these accidents.

This afternoon, around 12:15 p.m. a semi-tanker was traveling southbound on Bluff Street, approaching 500 N. When the light cycled to yellow the vehicle in front of the semi slammed on its brakes to stop instead of proceeding through on the yellow.

Sgt. Craig Harding of the St. George Police Department said that the semi hit the car and pushed it into the intersection.

“The officer told me that all of the people in the car were transported to the hospital,” Harding said. “They did not have to cut them out. Even if they’re walking they put them on a stretcher so it doesn’t mean they can’t walk. It’s a protocol they take in case they have a spinal injury, it doesn’t mean they have a broken neck or back.”

Harding also said the responding officer told him they didn’t have to cut anyone out of the car. The car was rolling, meaning they were able to roll it out of the road, the trunk was crunched but the collision did not reach the passenger area.

Harding said that the city code provides that a driver of a vehicle may not operate his vehicle in such a way as to collide with another vehicle; so if he does collide, he’s guilty of negligent collision. The driver of the semi was cited for negligent collision.

On Tuesday, a vehicle and a semi, pulling two trailers of hay bales, were both heading southbound on Bluff Street, approaching a red light. Harding said cars were backed up in the right hand lane, and the driver of the vehicle “punched it and got over in front of the semi and slammed to a stop.”

“So of course the semi hit him and pushed him into the intersection,” Harding said.

When the responding officer started to cite the vehicle driver for an unsafe lane change, Harding said the driver got upset and said, “I pulled in front of him, there was at least five or six feet between us.”

The officer on scene invited the offending driver, with the semi driver’s permission, to crawl up into the driver’s seat of the semi. Then the officer told him to call out to him when he could see a clipboard the officer would hold up as he walked from the front bumper of the semi forward. When the participant in the semi’s driver’s seat called out that he could see the clipboard, the officer invited him to come out of the semi and see the distance – it was over 20 feet, Harding said.

“The 20 feet is just an example of how far it takes for the driver of the semi to see the brake lights,” said Harding. “With semis, there are danger areas in front, behind, directly on both sides, never hang out in the blind spot, allow for turning movement for the trailer inside the tractor; you can’t expect to pull in front of a semi and expect them to be able to stop like a car, it takes them twice to three times as much distance to stop –for a semi truck going the same speed as a car – to stop.”

Weather and other factors may increase that distance.

“If you’re going to pull in front of a semi and slam on the brakes the lug nut rule wins,” Harding said, “the guy with the biggest lug nuts is the winner.”


email: [email protected]

twitter: @JoyceKuzmanic

Copyright 2012 St. George News. 

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  • Dr. Elder Prostate April 11, 2012 at 3:12 pm

    I hate semis on Bluff Street. It’s uncomfortable to be around them and they create a mess regardless if they’re accelerating or braking. There needs to be some kind of protocol for businesses on Bluff to have deliveries during slow hours, preferably in the middle of the night. We have too many Mazda M6s running yellows and going 40 during rush hour for there to be some fatass semi clogging one lane just turning out onto the road, nevermind it takes him the entire length of two or three blocks to slow down or accelerate. There’s too many young drivers our there right now and they all think they’re invincible while the pass slow traffic.

    • Greg April 11, 2012 at 6:38 pm

      Isn’t the speed limit on Bluff St 40 MPH? And you really gotta watch out for those Mazda’s. They are the REAL troublemakers around here. ha ha

  • Steve Shaw April 11, 2012 at 6:16 pm

    You’re kidding, right. People need to learn to drive safely in all conditions ! Period!

  • jade brooklyn April 11, 2012 at 8:19 pm

    That Meadow Gold dairy station or whatever it is across from Bluff Park was probably built there when Bluff was a little rural highway. Today, it needs to relocate off this busy avenue if possible.

  • sdasd April 11, 2012 at 9:42 pm

    no, it isn’t

  • michael April 12, 2012 at 12:25 am

    the was this is put on here is wrong my fiance was in the car that got hit today and the truck was speeding the light was red by the time the car stopped and she never slammed on the brakes and for being hurt two people where not but my fiance in the back seat was hurt very bad so i don’t know how people get off talking about s*&#^ they know nothing about.

    • Joyce Kuzmanic April 12, 2012 at 5:26 am

      Michael, we reported from police interview. We understand accidents are often contributory in cause and will be sorted out in the aftermath. Best wishes to your fiancé for a full recovery.

    • Smarty Pants April 12, 2012 at 11:07 am

      Michael—-Obviously instead of marriage you should consider college! Learn to spell and people might take you seriously

      • Cowgirl April 12, 2012 at 11:36 am

        True that, Smarty Pants.

  • Dr Andrew White April 12, 2012 at 6:27 am

    I ride a motorcycle and I have to be very careful at lights. I can stop fairly short-order due to my low combined mass. At a light, if I stop too quickly at a light, I might get rear ended.

    We all share the road. We all have the responsibility to keep it safe. Increasing the following distance

  • tyler April 12, 2012 at 3:45 pm


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