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NEPHI — A Juab County sheriff’s deputy suffered bumps and bruises but otherwise escaped injury after his squad vehicle was struck by a semitruck while responding to another crash Tuesday evening, authorities said.
Deputy Virge Sickels was responding to a rollover crash on I-15 about 7 miles south of Nephi.
“Deputy Sickels was one of the deputies that were en route to assist the highway patrol,” Juab County Sheriff Douglas Anderson said. “As he responded to that crash, he observed other cars off the side of the road, which was a completely separate circumstance.”
As he pulled off to check on motorists involved in the other crash, a semitruck crashed into the back of the pickup truck Sickels was driving. Sickels was transported to a hospital and released shortly after.
Sickels was wearing a seat belt. His squad truck was totaled in the crash, Anderson said. No other injuries were reported in the crash involving the deputy or the crash he pulled over to assist.
Anderson said the weather conditions were “terrible” in the area at the time of the crash.
“There was probably 1 or 2 inches of free-standing water on the road surface and it was raining hard,” he said. “The conditions weren’t necessarily ideal to be traveling high speeds in, responding to another crash.”
Sickels will likely return to the line of duty in a few days after he’s been given time to recover and recuperate from what happened, Anderson said.
“We’re grateful he was not hurt worse than he was — well not hurt, just bumps and bruises,” Anderson added. “That’s an administrator’s worse nightmare, to get a call at night or any time of that day that one of your deputies or one of your officers was involved in a crash or has been hurt. That has all pretty much alarmed. We were all worried until we were able to meet with the deputy and get that peace of mind. It’s a huge relief for all of us.”
Contributing: Natalie Molinet, KSL