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TREMONTON, Box Elder County — Five people were injured, one critically, following a multi-vehicle accident early Friday that involved three semi-trailers.
About 3:12 a.m, a semi jackknifed during slick and snowy conditions on eastbound I-84 in Box Elder County, said Utah Highway Patrol Cpl. Todd Johnson. The truck hit another semi. Both vehicles were in or near the emergency lane when a third semitrailer jackknifed and slid into the first accident, Johnson said.
One of the tractor-trailer drivers, a 34-year-old man from Salt Lake City, was taken to a local hospital with facial and head injuries. A 67-year-old woman driving another semi was taken by ambulance to a local hospital with chest injuries while her 59-year-old husband, who was sleeping when the accident happened, was flown to a hospital by medical helicopter in critical condition with chest and back injuries, Johnson said.
The third semi driver, a 52-year-old man from Virginia, was treated at the scene. His passenger, a 49-year-old man from Maryland, was taken to a local hospital by ambulance to be treated for a back injury.
About 45 minutes after the semitrailers collided, an SUV with Washington state plates traveling too fast for conditions slid into the back of a Box Elder County sheriff's pickup truck, Johnson said. The deputy was outside the vehicle when the accident occurred and was not injured.
Both vehicles suffered extensive damage, Johnson said.
Lane restrictions were in place for approximately four hours while the scene was cleaned up.
SR 23 closed
In Cache County, State Road 23 is closed from milepost 2.5 to milepost 5 because of a canal break caused by run-off. Traffic must use alternate routes, such as SR-30 to SR-252 to US-89/91.
UDOT says storm run-off in farmland between the Cache County communities of Wellsville and Mendon streamed into the canal, which was already filled with twigs, leaves, and other fall trash. This caused the canal to overflow and eventually wash out its banks.
Emergency crews are also keeping their eyes on homes in Wellsville after flooding damaged at least half a dozen houses there in the last 24 hours. The combination of heavy rain and frozen ground has been a recipe for disaster.
Pumps are working to keep water out of basements, but because the ground is frozen, it's been an around-the-clock effort.
UDOT and the Utah Highway Patrol say they will keep SR-23 closed until the storms subside and the flooding is controlled.