The death and other holiday week injuries begin early despite UHP plea to drive safely.
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One man was killed Wednesday in a crash on Interstate 80.
The fatal crash occurred at 5:36 p.m. on westbound I-80, near the Grassy Mountain rest area in Tooele County. A 26-year-old man driving a pickup truck hauling a small trailer lost control of the vehicle and was ejected from the truck when it rolled. He had not been wearing a seat belt, said UHP Cpl. Todd Johson.
Westbound traffic was temporarily shut down for two helicopters that flew to the scene for the man and a 2-year-old, who was also in the truck and secured in a car seat. After treating the man for some time, emergency responders declared him dead at the scene. More information about his identity was not immediately available.
The toddler was taken in one of the helicopters to a Salt Lake City hospital with nonlife-threatening injuries, Johnson said.
Meanwhile, 53 miles to the east, a four-vehicle crash snarled traffic near mile post 106 after UHP reports that a driver of a pickup truck, suspected of being under the influence, drove against traffic in the eastbound lanes.
An eastbound Chevy Tahoe swerved left to avoid the vehicle, causing the Tahoe to roll through the median into westbound lanes, injuring the female driver. UHP had no information on woman's injuries.
The driver of an eastbound Dodge pickup also swerved left to avoid the wrong-way vehicle, causing it to crash into an eastbound semitrailer. No one in the Dodge or the semi-truck was injured, Johnson said.
The driver of the wrong-way pickup was arrested for the DUI.
The crashes shut down the eastbound lanes and blocked all of the westbound lanes at exit 104, with westbound traffic allowed to pass on the shoulder, according to the Utah Department of Transportation. Eastbound traffic was diverted off at State Road 201.
The same day, UHP had released a public plea that people drive safe and strive for a fatality-free holiday weekend.