Woman dies following crash involving out-of-control semi in Virgin River Gorge

Scene of crash on south Interstate 15 near mile marker 14, Virgin River Gorge, Arizona, Dec. 24, 2021 | Photo courtesy of Beaver Dam Fire Department, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — A woman died after a crash involving an out-of-control semitractor-trailer early Friday morning on southbound Interstate 15 at the tail-end of the journey through the Virgin River Gorge in Arizona.

A map showing the approximate location of the early morning crash on southbound I-15 north of Littlefield, Ariz., Dec.24, 2021 | Crash graphic by iStock/Getty Images Plus, photo courtesy of Google Maps, St. George News | Click to enlarge

The three-vehicle crash, which took place just after midnight about 5 miles north of Littlefield, Arizona, near mile marker 14, involved a white passenger car with the female driver as its only occupant, a transport van and a semi.

Beaver Dam/Littlefield Fire Department Chief Jeff Hunt told St. George News that the cab of the semi had broken loose of its trailer after it had gone out of control traveling over a bridge in the wet and rainy conditions. The semi rolled on its side and broke free of the trailer. 

“The passenger car hit the wheels of the dolly that intruded well into the driver’s compartment,” Hunt said. “I was advised she had a fading pulse as I was heading in. I was able to go northbound in the southbound lanes to get directly to her, but on my arrival, she had no pulse or respiration with injuries nonconducive to life, so I pronounced her on my arrival.”

The transport van also collided with the two vehicles and had damage to one headlight but not much else, Hunt said. 

The crash forced the closure of southbound I-15 from midnight until 4 a.m., leaving Old Highway 91 as the only route toward Mesquite and Las Vegas in the overnight hours.

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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