Semi-truck leads deputies on chase through Kimball Junction
A semi-truck driving erratically through the Snyderville Basin Saturday afternoon, nearly running several cars off the road, led Summit County Sheriff’s deputies on a pursuit.
Lt. Andrew Wright, with the Sheriff’s Office, said dispatch received five calls from drivers within a 45-minute timeframe reporting the semi-truck’s activity. The first call came in at approximately 1:40 p.m. The truck, which was pulling a mixed-load trailer, was initially headed eastbound on Interstate 80 when the calls started to come in.
The truck apparently exited the interstate at Kimball Junction and continued driving toward Park City on S.R. 224, Wright said. A deputy was able to initiate a traffic stop on Old Ranch Road, but the driver sped off as the deputy approached.
The deputy initiated a pursuit, following the semi-truck through residential neighborhoods along Highland Drive and Bitner Road. Wright said the truck was weaving into oncoming lanes.
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“He blew through the stop sign at Bitner and continued onto Rasmussen Road before getting back onto the interstate, heading westbound,” he said. “He headed up Parleys when one of the deputies attempted to get around, weaving around all four lanes of traffic.”
Wright said the driver eventually pulled over and exited the truck around Summit Park, laying on the ground in surrender. The westbound lanes of the interstate were briefly shut down as the driver was taken into custody.
“He made some bizarre comments that people were after him, so he may be dealing with mental health issues or some kind of drug-induced psychosis,” Wright said. “But, the officers didn’t believe that he was impaired or intoxicated.”
The driver, 41, of Chico, California, was arrested under suspicion of aggravated assault, reckless driving, reckless endangerment, and evading, a Sheriff’s Office report states. Wright said the driver told the authorities he was supposed to be delivering his cargo to the East Coast. No injuries or accidents were reported as a result of the incident.
“The scary thing for me is the fact that this was a semi pulling a trailer with cargo onboard,” Wright said. “If he had hit a car head on, we are talking tragedy. It is a miracle that this ended without any major accidents and that we were able to get this shut down before it continued on.”
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The Park City post of the American Legion has canceled an annual Memorial Day ceremony normally held at the Park City Cemetery, citing the efforts to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.