accident_snowLast Friday night, a near head-on collision in Spanish Fork closed highway SR-89 for an hour.

In the snowy road conditions, an Acura traveling southward attempted to pass a slow moving vehicle near marker 301. A Dodge pickup truck was traveling the opposite direction, headed north. The two vehicles collided nearly head-on in the north-bound lane.

Both 27-year-old William Brackett, who was driving the Acura, and 45-year-old Richard Kocinski, driving the pickup truck were in critical condition. Both were transported to the Utah Valley Regional Medical Center. Brackett was transported by air in critical condition, Kocinski by ambulance. The latter has since been released, the cuts to the head he received are no longer life-threatening.

Police and emergency response personnel said that both vehicles were driving too fast for the road conditions at the time.

It is very lucky that both drivers are alive and relatively well. Head-on collisions are often fatal. One year in the United State, head-on collisions accounted for only 2.0% of all crashes, but were responsible for 10.1% of all fatalities. According to basic Newtonian Physics, if two vehicles are traveling at 50 mph and hit each other face on, it is equivalent to a moving vehicle running into a stationary one at 100 mph. That’s why head-on collisions can be so dangerous.

Most are caused by lane-deaprtures by one or more party. So preventative measures are what might prevent a lot of accidents: awareness. As a driver, make sure that you are following traffic signs and road surface markings to help guide through opposing traffic lanes and/or curves.

From all of us at Christensen & Hymas, stay safe out there on the roads!

Image courtesy of KSL