Investigators re-create deadly crash | ParkRecord.com

Investigators re-create deadly crash

Patrick Parkinson, Of the Record staff

A South Summit man has still not been charged in connection with a traffic crash that killed a Peoa man March 30 on State Road 32 near Kamas.

Daniel Howells, 41, died when he was struck nearly head on in his Saab by a Dodge pickup truck driven by a Woodland man, the authorities say. The crash involved four vehicles near 1450 North at about 6:55 a.m.

The driver of the pickup truck was traveling north when he attempted to pass a Mazda car going the same direction.

Before colliding with Howells, the truck clipped an oncoming Jeep in the opposite lane when the driver failed to return to his side of the highway, Utah Highway Patrol spokesman Cameron Roden said.

Howells was traveling south toward Kamas at the time of the crash. At a minimum, Roden said he expects the driver of the pickup truck to be cited for improper lane change.

But the suspect has not been charged yet.

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"People are very naturally concerned and curious, and wanting some type of resolution," Brickey said. "Unfortunately, resolutions in our court system are not sometimes ones that come about quickly."

The death of Howells compounds the complexity of the case, he explained.

"I’m sure the families involved in this case, on all sides, are very concerned about what’s going on," Brickey said.

Brickey insists investigators are not covering up the case because the suspect might have connections to prominent community members.

"I just know the troopers are stretched thin," Brickey said. "I assumed everybody was doing as thorough of job as they can with what circumstantial information they have. There is no cover up."

Determining road conditions at the time of the crash is critical, he said.

Howells’ daughter was a passenger in the Saab. She suffered minor injuries in the crash. The other drivers also had minor injuries.

"The troopers are having to look at the weather, they’re having to look at the driving conditions and what would have been reasonable, they’re having to look at the possibility of impairment by anybody and the health and wellness of the individuals," Brickey said. "We’re talking about multiple cars colliding with one another. It’s not one that you can just look at and say incident A resulted in incident B occurring. This one’s got A, B and C."

Brickey is sure he’ll have questions for the trooper when he receives the report.

"The nature of the accident’s injuries does create some intense interest in the case. But I assure you the troopers look at every accident scene to try to process it thoroughly every time," Brickey said. "In this case, one of the drivers has passed away and that makes that thoroughness that much more intense."