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UDOT to shut down busy Taylorsville street for months, high number of crashes to blame

(Construction signs near the intersection of 6200 South and Bangerter Highway. These lanes will shut down Monday night. Photo: Paul Nelson)

TAYLORSVILLE, Utah — A traffic alert from the Utah Department of Transportation.  A portion of a very busy street is shutting down for months starting Monday night, and officials say an extremely high number of traffic accidents is the main reason why.

25 crashes

The Taylorsville Police Department has only been in operation since the beginning of July.  However, since that time, Chief Brady Cottam says there have been at least 25 crashes near the intersection of 6200 South and the Bangerter Highway.

Cottam says, “That’s 25 accidents that Taylorsville Police have responded on.  We also share this intersection with the West Jordan Police Department, and I’m not sure what their numbers are.”

Running red lights

One of those traffic accidents led to critical injuries, according to Cottam.  He says one was caused by an impaired driver. But several were the result of drivers speeding too quickly through the construction site.  However, the biggest contributor to the high number of crashes is people going through red lights.

“I want to say about 72 percent of those wrecks have been red light violations,” Cottam said.

Changes are coming

Starting Monday at 7 p.m., all eastbound and westbound traffic on 6200 South will be blocked at Bangerter Highway, according to UDOT Spokesman John Gleason.  Additionally, he said people will be allowed to turn right onto Bangerter from 6200 South. However, drivers will not be permitted to travel under the overpass while it’s under construction.

Gleason said, “If you’re trying to go straight through on 6200 South, you’re going to have to use an alternate route.”

He acknowledges this is a significant decision by UDOT. However, he says they’re not seeing the same number of crashes at any of Bangerter’s other interchanges or intersections.

Safety matters

“Sometimes, it’s important to go above and beyond the normal standards to ensure safety, and I think this is one of those cases.  It makes a lot of sense.  We want to ensure the safety of the people that are driving through here,” Gleason said.

Eastbound and westbound traffic will resume after the new overpass is completed in November.  Northbound and southbound traffic on Bangerter will remain open.