APPLE VALLEY – Three people went to the hospital Saturday night, one of them in serious to critical condition, after a rainy collision occurred on state Route 59 in Apple Valley.
At approximately 10:15 p.m., emergency responders received a report of an accident on state Route 59 near milepost 12 after a white Saturn traveling west was hit from behind by a Dodge truck.
“It was raining, and they (the Saturn occupants) saw another car coming toward them in the opposite direction,” Joe Dougherty, public information officer for the Utah Department of Public Safety, said. “It looked like … the car was coming into their lane, so they were slowing down. In the process of slowing down, or maybe not quite coming to a stop, they were rear-ended by a Dodge truck that was pulling a box trailer.”
The impact of the collision “basically smashed the rear end of the … Saturn almost all the way into the driver’s seat,” Dougherty said.
Responders from the Hildale-Colorado City Fire Department had to cut the roof of the Saturn to extricate the two women who had been traveling inside the vehicle.
The passenger was talking and was in fair condition, Dougherty said; the driver, on the other hand, was in more serious to critical condition. Both women were taken by ambulance to Dixie Regional Medical Center in St. George. Dougherty said he did not have details on their specific injuries.
There were three occupants in the Dodge truck. The driver was not injured in the crash. One of the passengers ultimately ended up going to Valley View Medical Center in Cedar City in good to fair condition. (See ed. note)
“He was talking and everything,” Dougherty said. “He was there for a while and then decided he wanted to go to the hospital. It was a little while. … Sometimes people don’t realize what shape they’re in.”
The driver of the Dodge was given a citation for rear-ending the Saturn. (See ed. note)
Dougherty said he believes the occupants of both vehicles were wearing their seat belts, which likely helped save their lives.
He encouraged motorists to use extra caution whenever driving in inclement weather.
“The Highway Patrol urges people to be extra cautious when driving in rainy and wet conditions. … Increase your following distance so you have more time to stop,” he said.
This report is based on preliminary information provided by law enforcement or other emergency responders and may not contain the full scope of findings.
St. George News reporter Devan Chavez contributed to this report.
Ed. note: Updated per additional information received.
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