Second-leading cause of crashes strikes again at Sunset, Dixie Drive

Gold Cross paramedics and St. George firefighters tend to two-vehicle crash on West Sunset Boulevard and North Dixie Drive Friday morning, St. George, Utah, Oct. 6, 2017 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — The intersection of West Sunset Boulevard and North Dixie Drive was the scene of a two-vehicle crash that ended with numerous responders, traffic delays and extensively damaged vehicles but left both drivers uninjured Friday morning.

Officers redirecting traffic after two-vehicle crash on West Sunset Boulevard and North Dixie Drive Friday morning, St. George, Utah, Oct. 6, 2017 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

Shortly after 10:30 a.m., officers and emergency personnel were dispatched to the accident involving a silver Toyota four-door passenger car and a green GMC pickup truck.

Emergency responders found the Toyota in the middle of the intersection blocking both westbound lanes with the pickup truck a few feet away. When police arrived both drivers were out of their vehicles and reported they were uninjured, St. George Police Officer Ken Childs said.

Officers diverted all westbound traffic on Sunset Boulevard into the center turn lane to allow firefighters and EMTs to tend to the scene.

After speaking to both drivers and witnesses, officers determined that the man driving the Toyota was heading south on North Dixie Drive and entered the turn lane as he entered the intersection, intent on making a left-hand turn onto Sunset Boulevard heading east.

Meanwhile, the pickup truck was heading north on the same street and struck the Toyota as it crossed over into the driver’s path during the turn, an impact that spun both vehicles in the intersection.

GMC pickup sustains extensive frontal damage during two-vehicle crash on West Sunset Boulevard and North Dixie Drive Friday morning, St. George, Utah, Oct. 6, 2017 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

The Toyota headed into the intersection behind two other vehicles that both made it through the turn without incident, Childs said. However, the Toyota was struck before it was able to clear the intersection.

“The man in the pickup said he was surprised by the first two cars that made the turn in front of him, but he was unable to avoid hitting the third one, the Toyota,” the officer said.

The Toyota driver, Brenden Sutherland, told St. George News at the scene that this crash was a first for him, and that he has lived in the area for just a few years after relocating from Maryland. He went on to say that as he was going through the intersection behind other vehicles he blinked and didn’t see the truck until it was too late.

Both vehicles sustained extensive frontal damage in the crash and were rendered inoperable before they were towed from the scene. A citation as issued to Sutherland for failing to yield on a left-hand turn, Childs said.

According to the Utah Department of Public Safety, the top five causes of car crashes in 2015 are:

  1. Followed Too Closely.
  2. Failed to Yield.
  3. Speed.
  4. Failed to Keep in Proper Lane.
  5. Distracted Driving.

Failing to yield was listed as the fourth-leading cause of all fatal crashes for the same year in Utah.

Childs said that traffic isn’t quite as heavy this time of year, but to increase safety drivers need to slow down and be more alert to other drivers on the road, adding, “the weather is beautiful, and this is a great time of year to be in Southern Utah, so don’t be in such a hurry and enjoy it.”

This report is based on statements from police or other emergency responders and may not contain the full scope of findings.

Click on photo to enlarge it, then use your left-right arrow keys to cycle through the gallery.  

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2017, all rights reserved.


Free News Delivery by Email

Would you like to have the day's news stories delivered right to your inbox every evening? Enter your email below to start!


  • tcrider October 6, 2017 at 8:38 pm

    really wish police would enforce the law more by ticketing tailgaters and no blinker use in this town, it works really good most of the other cities in this country.

  • utahdiablo October 6, 2017 at 11:12 pm

    Constant, everyday event seeing these jackasses turning left without waiting, or even more dangerous, running red lights and stop signs…..what the hell are you waiting for Policeman? Write these people tickets, even if they are in your ward.

  • jaltair October 6, 2017 at 11:30 pm

    I’m from Central Valley of CA, and I’ve seen some pretty reckless driving in my time here. There are so many drivers still on phones and drivers who are distracted and seem to drive as though they are in video games, lane changes fast and too close, tailgating, and generally just exhibition of poor driving skills. This is my impression of why there are so many accidents in St George and surrounding areas. Add to that the SUN and driving in am or pm, either eastbound or westbound, and getting blinded by the brightness, add dirty windows, and you have a scenario for someone not being able to see a vehicle . . . voila, “failure to yield.”

    • Mike P. October 7, 2017 at 9:06 am

      jaltair, I agree with you completely. We’re from Southern California where everyone complains about the traffic & driving but we’ve never seen anything like this here . Locals say it’s not true but I beg to differ. I’ve had way more “near misses” here in the past 1 1/2 years with people blatantly turning left in front of me than I had in the 45 years of driving in Ca. I just can’t figure out what’s going on here. I’m just glad we have newer vehicles with good brakes !

    • .... October 7, 2017 at 1:15 pm

      You don’t like the driving here. .feel free to go to back to CA

      • Real Life October 7, 2017 at 2:45 pm

        Crawl back in your hole loser.

      • comments October 7, 2017 at 4:29 pm

        Did they let you out for good this time?

  • Honor1st October 7, 2017 at 6:55 am

    From the pics , it appears the GMC airbag deployed but not the Toyota .
    I recently had an accident in a foreign car , the air bag did not deploy and
    I ended up taking a steering wheel to the chest & breathing for the next month was very painful .

    Before making another vehicle purchase , I plan on thoroughly checking the air bag performance history for that model !

  • DRT October 7, 2017 at 8:42 am

    I guess that Utah DPS is too politically correct to give the number one reason as one, or more drivers driving while having a case of anal-cranium inversion.

  • youcandoit October 7, 2017 at 11:44 am

    I too have problems with people turning in front of me or almost getting side swiped or t-boned. They always make illegal turns. If it isn’t the idiot drivers it’s the to old to drive crowd. Yeeeeesh

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.