U.S.|7 Are Killed arsenic Sandstorm successful Utah Causes a Highway Pileup
Officials said 20 vehicles were progressive successful a clang aft precocious winds created a sandstorm that constricted visibility connected Interstate 15.
July 26, 2021, 12:30 a.m. ET
At slightest 7 radical were killed and respective others were injured erstwhile a sandstorm that blinded drivers led to a pileup successful southwestern Utah connected Sunday afternoon, authorities officials said.
The Utah Highway Patrol said it appeared that 20 vehicles were involved successful the clang “after precocious winds caused a soil oregon particulate tempest and impaired visibility connected the roadway.”
“No 1 could see, truthful radical started stopping, and past you conscionable get a concatenation reaction,” Trooper Andrew Battenfield, a spokesperson for the Highway Patrol, said precocious Sunday night. “Nobody could see, and past each of a sudden, you’re slamming into a car,” helium said. “It’s conscionable a horrific situation.”
Several radical were taken to section hospitals successful captious condition, officials said.
The crash, which happened astir 5 p.m. section time, prompted the closure of parts of Interstate 15 successful Millard County, betwixt Salt Lake City and St. George. The Highway Patrol said the roadworthy would beryllium closed successful the country for a “significant time.”
Details astir the victims were not instantly available.
Trooper Battenfield said officials did not cognize precocious Sunday nighttime however galore radical had been hospitalized.
“We don’t adjacent cognize however galore for definite were hospitalized, this is however large of a clang it was,” Trooper Battenfield said. “A batch of them are successful captious condition.”
Trooper Battenfield said a “microburst of upwind successful an country that didn’t person a batch of vegetation,” kick-started the crash.
Photos shared by the Highway Patrol appeared to amusement the wreckage of a conveyance pinned beneath a tractor-trailer. Another representation showed a reddish conveyance that had been severed by a antithetic tractor-trailer.
About an hr earlier the crash, a terrible thunderstorm successful Parowan, Utah, astir 90 miles southwest of the crash, was stirring up particulate and dirt, according to the National Weather Service bureau successful Salt Lake City.
At the time, Parowan was nether a terrible thunderstorm warning, and the Weather Service said winds of up to 60 miles per hr were possible.
It was unclear whether the tempest successful Parowan was connected to the sandstorm successful Millard County.
Dust storms are not uncommon successful Utah, having occurred as precocious arsenic June and April successful the state. A caller survey published by Brigham Young University recovered that, successful the north-central portion of the state, 90 percent of municipality particulate comes from adust water beds.