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The Utah Highway Patrol was investigating a pair of multiple car crashes on Interstate 15 near St. George that appear to have been caused by a pickup truck that dropped large rolls of insulation onto the highway.

The accidents happened about 5:40 p.m. Monday in the northbound lanes near milepost 10, the UHP said in a news release.

Police dispatchers fielded multiple 911 calls about the insulation in the roadway just moments before the crashes occurred, UHP Cpl. Todd Johnson said.

The first collision occurred when a motorist slowed after seeing the insulation in the road and was rear-ended by a second car, UHP said. A male passenger in the second car suffered serious injuries and was taken by medical helicopter to a Las Vegas hospital. His condition was not known Monday evening.

The second crash quickly followed the first and also occurred when one car slowed to avoid the mess on the highway and was rear-ended by another car. No injuries resulted from that collision, UHP said.

UHP troopers closed the northbound lanes of I-15 for about 30 minutes to accommodate the helicopter. The left lane remained closed for another 90 minutes while troopers investigated the crashes.

The male driver of the pickup that lost the insulation has contacted UHP, the agency said.

It was not clear Monday whether any citations had been issued to drivers.

Twitter: @KimballBennion

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