DPS: 55 separate crashes near Flagstaff, 1 fatality

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Mother Nature frosts High Country

The following news release was sent by the Department of Public Safety:

FLAGSTAFF - Today between the hours 1:00 AM to 3:00 PM, Arizona Department of Public Safety Officers investigated 55 separate collisions, assisted 40 vehicles that lost control and slid off the roadway and provided further assistance to 23 stranded motorists, which occurred on Interstate 40 between Milepost 160 to 225.

So far there have only been two reported injuries as a result of the numerous collisions.

Unfortunately, there was a two-vehicle fatality at Milepost 161 eastbound around 2:17 AM.This collision involved two vehicles with one commercial vehicle involvement.

Vehicles traveling at speeds that were greater than reasonable and prudent were determined to be the primary cause of the collisions occurring.This does not mean the vehicles were exceeding the posted limit, it means they were traveling at speeds too fast for conditions (wet/icy road surface) that did not allow the driver to maintain control of the vehicle, slow down and bring the vehicle to a safe stop to avoid a collision.

Inclement weather with wet/icy roadway surfaces were determined to be a contributing cause (not a primary cause).

DPS request that all motorists be alert to changing weather conditions and to slow down drastically on wet or icy roadways.