TOOELE COUNTY – Highway Patrol troopers are investigating a nasty rollover crash on I-80, saying it serves as a reminder of how dangerous holiday traffic can be.
Officials say five people involved in the rollover were in a car heading west on I-80 near mile marker 17 when the vehicle flipped.
“It looks like the driver may have been a little bit drowsy and went off into the left shoulder,” according to UHP Trooper Garrett Wilson.
Once the car hit the rumble strips, Garrett says the driver then swerved right and went off the road.
He says, “The vehicle then rolled several times,” Wilson says. “One man was ejected from the rear of the vehicle and received minor injuries.”
Officials say it’s very unusual for someone to have only minor injuries after being ejected. Troopers said the man was walking around and talking, but was taken to the hospital for chest pain. The other people in the car also sustained minor injuries.
“Only two people, in the front, the passenger and the driver, were wearing seatbelts. The other three occupants in the vehicle were not wearing seatbelts,” Wilson says.
Lieutenant Nick Street says we’re not out of the “100 Deadliest Days of Summer” just yet. Last year, there were actually zero fatalities over the Labor Day holiday weekend, and they want a repeat of that this year. Street admits 2019 was an abnormally low number for deaths on the road. Last year, there were only 61 fatalities between Memorial Day and Labor Day.
“This year, we’ve seen 92 lives lost,” Street says.
Officers from law enforcement agencies all over the state will be out in force looking for impaired drivers and people not buckled up.
“We’re looking at over 200 extra shifts being worked by law enforcement to combat some of the dangers that we see that cause fatalities over the Labor Day holiday,” Street says.