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Utah sees spike in summertime roadway deaths

WOODS CROSS – The Beehive State reports 102 roadway deaths from Memorial Day to Labor Day, up by 12 from a year ago during the “100 deadliest days of summer.”

Mariana Sablan, 18, remembers the moment she lost control of her car on a Tooele County highway in July.

“I can feel it in my hands still if I think about it because it was so harsh,” the University of Utah student said. “I just repeated that I was sorry.”

Sablan doesn’t remember much more after the crash.

“It was strange to realize that, in the midst of flipping three times, we were perfectly fine,” she said.

Speaking to reporters in a Woods Cross lot filled with totaled cars, Sablan says seatbelts saved her and her passenger’s lives.

“Don’t think, ‘I should just wear it because I don’t want to get a ticket,’ or that we’re just supposed to,” she said.

“They must have, in the back of their minds, the realization that seatbelts truly save lives.”

The UHP says unrestrained summertime deaths dropped from 25 in 2017 to 16 in 2018, but aggressive driving deaths increased from 15 to 26.