Seat belts credited for saving lives in crash that clogged Brigham Road I-15 exit

Emergency workers clean up the scene of an accident on Exit 4 of Interstate 15 shortly after noon Saturday, March 27, 2021. St. George, Utah | Photo by E. George Goold St. George News

ST. GEORGE — A car crash on the Brigham Road offramp of southbound Interstate 15 Saturday shortly after noon demonstrated the importance of wearing seat belts, officers said.

Traffic backed up after a crash on the Brigham Road offramp of southbound Interstate 15 around noon on March 27, 2021. St. George, Utah | Photo by Chris Reed, St. George News

A silver Kia Sportage was struck from behind by a white Cadillac Deville in a high-impact collision, but both drivers were protected by airbags and seat belts and neither was injured seriously.

“That’s why we preach seatbelts so often,” Utah Highway Patrol Sergeant Jake Hicks said. “That impact was quite severe, and I hate to think what could have happened if they weren’t wearing seat belts.”

According to Hicks, traffic was heavier than usual for that time of day. The crash caused a back-up for a time at the Brigham Road exit.

Hicks said the female driver of the Kia was in the far left southbound lane slowing down as the roundabout at the bottom of the exit approached. 

The male driver of the Cadillac behind the Kia was going a little too fast, hit the brakes, slid a distance and then struck the right rear area of the Kia with the front left end of the Cadillac.

A silver Kia Sportage was spun counterclockwise and slid to a stop on the shoulder of Exit 4 on Interstate 15 Saturday March 27, 2021.St. George, Utah | Photo by E. George Goold St. George News

The angle of the collision caused the Kia to spin counterclockwise off the road, where it stopped on the shoulder. The Cadillac stopped in the middle of the lane.

St. George Fire Department was first to arrive on scene, followed by Gold Cross Ambulance, Highway Patrol and St. George Police. 

The vehicles were towed away and traffic was back to normal flow after 1 p.m.

No drugs or alcohol were involved, but Hicks said speed was a factor in the crash. The driver of the Cadillac was issued citations at the scene.

“So I guess the overall lesson is that traffic on these exits can slow down quickly,” said Hicks. “You want to slow down, scan ahead and anticipate problems in case you have to stop abruptly. And wear your seat belt.”

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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