SALT LAKE CITY -- The Utah Highway Patrol is urging motorists to slow down after four patrol cars were struck by out-of-control vehicles while troopers were investigating other storm-related accidents over the weekend.
Two of the troopers were inside cars at the time and escaped with minor injuries, while two other troopers were outside and were not injured, according to the patrol.
The latest accident occurred Sunday on Interstate 15 in South Salt Lake when a car driving too fast slid into a patrol car occupied by a trooper who was assisting a motorist whose vehicle went off the roadway in slick conditions. A similar accident was reported Friday on Interstate 70 in Clear Creek Canyon.
On Saturday, two troopers were outside their patrol cars investigating separate Interstate 80 crashes near the Tooele City exit when vehicles traveling too fast slid into their cars.
"If troopers are out there they are going to be exposed because they are usually outside of their vehicles," UHP Sgt. Jacob Cox told the Deseret News. "If one vehicle has lost control, it is probably because the road conditions are poor, and everyone else in the area should reduce their speed and slow down."
Thirteen such accidents have occurred so far this year in Utah, resulting in injuries to three troopers that were serious enough to require medical attention, Cox added.
A storm that left up to a foot of snow in parts of northern Utah kept law enforcement authorities busy over the weekend.
On Saturday alone, the UHP in Salt Lake County responded to 61 crashes that caused at least $1,500 in damage, 14 personal injury crashes and 46 vehicles that slid off the roadway.
In Utah County, there were 19 property damage crashes, one personal injury crash and 14 vehicles that slid off the roadway.