The Sunday afternoon crashes on Interstate 15 near the town of Kanosh came at the end of a state holiday weekend, often resulting in increased road traffic. At least 10 people have been taken to hospitals, three of them in critical condition, according to the Utah Highway Patrol.
Land and air ambulances were used to transport accident victims.
The stacking occurred during a period of high winds that caused a dust or sandstorm that reduced visibility, the highway patrol said.
“We are stunned and saddened by the horrific accidents in Millard County,” State Governor Spencer J Cox wrote in a tweet.
“We fervently pray for the loved ones of those who perished and for those who are fighting for their lives. “
We are stunned and saddened by the horrific accidents in Millard County. We fervently pray for the loved ones of those who perished and for those who are fighting for their lives.https: //t.co/yGalbS0gRK
– Utah Governor Spencer J. Cox (@GovCox) July 26, 2021
Five of the eight people killed were in one vehicle, while two others were in another vehicle, according to a press release. Another death occurred in a third vehicle. Several children were among the dead, Highway Patrol Sgt Cameron Rhoden told KUTV in Salt Lake City.
“We have vehicles everywhere. Several vehicles attempted to exit the road. We have vehicles that have turned to the side, ”said Rhoden. “One of the vehicles pulling a trailer, the trailer was pretty much completely destroyed and is on the highway. “
I-15 remained partially closed Sunday evening. Traffic was redirected around the crash site.
Kanosh is located approximately 160 miles (258 kilometers) south of Salt Lake City.
On Sunday, the roads were packed with drivers returning home after a long weekend to celebrate a holiday recognizing the history of Utah and the settlers of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who marched to the west in search of religious freedom.