TRAFFIC

As winter weather picks up, UHP advises drivers to not abandon vehicles on roadside

Jan 5, 2024, 6:00 PM

A snowplow clears the road in Big Cottonwood Canyon on Friday, Dec. 1, 2023. With the return of win...

A snowplow clears the road in Big Cottonwood Canyon on Friday, Dec. 1, 2023. With the return of winter weather, Utah Highway Patrol is pleading with people to not leave their vehicles abandoned by the side of the road. (Laura Seitz/Deseret News)

(Laura Seitz/Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — With the return of winter weather, Utah Highway Patrol troopers are pleading with people to not leave their vehicles abandoned by the side of the road.

This reminder comes just a day after an abandoned car caused a semi-truck to roll and snarled traffic on I-215 for several hours.

Sgt. Cameron Roden said this is something UHP troopers are constantly watching for.

“As troopers are out and about during their normal patrol, we always stop to check on those vehicles,” he said. “[We] wanna make sure that no one does need assistance and if there’s anything we can do to help get them back on their way.”

If the car is abandoned, troopers will usually leave them there for a couple of hours and try to contact the owners before having them dragged off.

Along with this, he said not abandoning vehicles at the sides of the roads is especially important during the winter because it causes problems for the snowplows.

If you do have an emergency while on the road, Roden advises you to try and get to the nearest exit.  However, if you can’t, try and get as far off the road as possible.

“A motorist that’s traveling down the roadway, they need to make sure that they’re paying attention and being aware for any type of hazard,” he said. “If they have to stop for any reason they have to make sure that it’s clear to do so and that they’ve maintained their lane without leaving their lane and hitting something on the shoulder.”

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As winter weather picks up, UHP advises drivers to not abandon vehicles on roadside