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After 75 crashes reported Wednesday, UHP cautions drivers to brace for more snow

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SALT LAKE CITY — Dozens of crashes were reported on slick roads along the Wasatch Front Wednesday morning after a storm dumped snow across the state overnight. While crews have cleaned up from those crashes, more snow is on the way.

The National Weather Service forecasts a storm to sweep through most of the state Thursday. The storm is expected to deliver another 1 to 3 inches of snow in the valleys and 2 to 6 inches in the mountains.

The agency tweeted that motorists should expect the wintry weather to impact travel on I-15, I-70 and I-80, as well as U.S. highways 6, 40 and 89.

With that forecast in mind, Utah Highway Patrol troopers want drivers to prepare for more slick conditions. UHP Sgt. Nick Street recommended motorists slow down on Utah's freeways and highways, be aware of larger vehicles around them when on the roads and also plan to leave early on days when slick roads are forecasted.

"Take your time — give yourself that little extra time. Wake up early and make sure you yourself aren't a part of the problem — you're not rushed," he said. "I would ask that everybody knocks 5 to 10 mph off the speed they're comfortable with."

He also recommended that motorists check their tires to see if they aren't balding or deflated and can handle the slick roads.

UHP officials tweeted that troopers investigated about 75 crashes from the time snow began to fall Tuesday night through 11 a.m. Wednesday. That's an improvement from 224 crashes after a winter storm on Dec. 2 and more than 150 crashes on Dec. 12.

While no major injuries were reported Wednesday, the crashes snarled post-Christmas Day commutes on I-15.

The largest of those involved a semitruck rollover on southbound I-15 in Draper that initially blocked four lanes.

Utah Highway Patrol responded to a report of the crash near 13200 South shortly after 5:30 a.m. For two hours, four lanes were blocked, and only the HOV lane was open. The cab of the truck was moved and two more lanes of traffic reopened about 7:45 a.m., KSL Traffic Center reported. The two right lanes remained closed until shortly before 3 p.m. Wednesday.

Troopers said a white passenger car was going too fast for the conditions and collided with the semitruck, causing it to tip onto its side. A witness told KSL TV that the driver of the white car lost control of the vehicle and it hit a center divider on the freeway before striking the semitruck.

No injuries were reported in the crash. The semitruck was hauling dry goods, so hazmat crews were not needed, and heavy-duty tow trucks were called to clear the scene, officials said.

Street said two Utah Highway Patrol cars were also struck while on duty Wednesday morning.

The first incident was reported on northbound I-15 at 800 South when an SUV drove into the back of a trooper's car, Street said. The second incident involved a vehicle colliding with a parked squad car on the I-15 northbound off-ramp at the 11400 South exit.

In both cases, the driver of the vehicle that collided with a squad car was driving "too fast for the conditions," Street added. No injuries were reported in either crash.

Get commute times on the KSL traffic page and traffic updates every 10 minutes on KSL Newsradio.

Contributing: Felicia Martinez, KSL TV; Mary Richards, KSL Newsradio


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Carter Williams is an award-winning reporter who covers general news, outdoors, history and sports for He previously worked for the Deseret News. He is a Utah transplant by the way of Rochester, New York.


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