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UDOT urging drivers to practice safety over the holiday weekend

By Deborah Wilber - Standard-Examiner | Jul 1, 2022

Ben Dorger, Standard-Examiner

Traffic is seen on I-15 on Thursday, May 21, 2020.

As America’s birthday nears, the Utah Department of Transportation is reminding drivers to be cautious and plan ahead for traffic delays along the Wasatch Front and Wasatch Back starting Friday through Monday.

According to a press release issued by UDOT, drivers traveling from Utah County north to Ogden and beyond on Friday could encounter 30-minute delays.

Based on historical data and predictive modeling, UDOT traffic engineers expect delays along northbound Interstate 15 in Salt Lake and Davis counties and southbound I-15 near Nephi on Friday between 2-7 pm.

In an attempt to reduce traffic delays during the Fourth of July weekend, UDOT is suspending most construction projects across the state. Restrictions in some work zones, however, will remain in effect to ensure safety and accommodate ongoing construction.

Traffic restrictions including reduced speeds, uneven pavement and narrow or shifting lanes will be present at I-84 near Morgan, I-80 and I-215 in eastern Salt Lake County, I-70 near the I-15 interchange and U.S. 40 north of Heber City.

The Utah Highway Patrol is adding an additional 82 shifts to assist in providing a safe weekend. Fifty-two of the additional shifts will be geared toward enforcing speed limits, seatbelts and distracted driving violations with the remaining shifts patrolling for drivers under the influence.

According to Public Affairs Officer Sgt. Cameron Roden, UHP responded to 169 crashes with one fatality in 2021 between July 2, and July 5. Statewide, 580 crashes with two fatalities were reported to various law enforcement agencies during the same time period.

Roden said DUI Blitz operations are to begin Friday night throughout multiple counties.

“We want to prevent tragedies and have a safe weekend,” Roden said.

Being within the three-month window of the busiest and deadliest days on Utah roads, UDOT Senior Communications Manager Mitch Shaw said drivers need to use common sense, drive responsibly and be patient so everyone can return to home to their families.

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