CEDAR CITY — Traffic on Interstate 15 came to a standstill in both directions due to multiple crashes in the Beaver area late Friday afternoon.
Utah Highway Patrol Cpl. Tera Wahlberg told Cedar City News that the first crashes in the area were reported shortly after 3 p.m.
“About 3:15, we started getting some slide-offs,” Wahlberg said. “Then, there was about a six-car crash. It just built up from there.”
“We don’t really know how many crashes we have,” Wahlberg added. “There’s a lot of single and multi-vehicle crashes, rollovers, jackknifed semis … we just had a semi rollover at mile post 100.”
“The initial slide-off where this started happening was at mile post 115, so this is spread out over 15 miles now,” Wahlberg added, noting that both the northbound and southbound sides were affected.
Slick roads caused by snowy weather conditions, along with poor visibility, were factors in the crashes, according to UHP.
As of 7 p.m. Wahlberg said no serious injuries had been reported.
“We’ve had a couple of people who’ve been transported with minor injuries, but nothing life-threatening or serious,” she said.
UHP posted several updates on its Twitter feed throughout the evening, Additionally, multiple traffic alerts were posted by Utah Department of Transportation, notifying motorists of road closures and detours and advising them to use caution and avoid traveling in the area if possible.
We are waiting on further details for the multiple vehicle crashes on I-15 milepost 115. If you are traveling the area please slowdown and wear your seatbelts. pic.twitter.com/Hovi5GndMb
— Utah Highway Patrol (@UTHighwayPatrol) March 12, 2021
UDOT posted a tweet at 7 p.m. that stated: “Update: NB I-15 is now open at Exit 109 in Beaver. Crews are still working to clear crashes and slide offs in both directions between Cove Fort and Beaver. Expect intermittent closures in both directions. Slow down and use caution.”
Walhberg said additional UHP troopers from multiple sections of the state have been called in to assist in investigating and clearing the various scenes.
“We’re trying to get it cleared,” Wahlberg said. “The plows are getting there. Hopefully, the weather starts to cooperate.”
Although some traffic was able to be diverted onto Manderfield Road between Exits 112 and 109, a number of vehicles were reportedly stuck on the interstate for two hours or more.
St. George resident Adam Loosle said he was traveling southbound near milepost 136 when traffic came to a halt. During the long wait, he said he and other motorists had snowball fights and made a snowman on the side of the road.
This report is based on information provided by law enforcement and may not contain the full scope of findings.
Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.