Spate of car crashes keeps troopers, police busy

Colorado State Patrol Trooper Chris Wright looks over the scene of an accident west of the 31 and F Road intersection that sent two men to the hospital with injuries. According to Trooper Wright, the Eagle Talon was traveling at a high rate of speed westbound on F Road when another car clipped it, sending the Talon spinning more than 400 feet down the road and through a fence.

A rash of car accidents kept authorities with the Colorado State Patrol and Grand Junction Police Department busy Monday despite clear roads and mild weather.

Two men were sent to the hospital after an Eagle Talon careened into a fence near 31 and F Roads. State Trooper Chris Wright, who responded to the accident, said he responded to nine accidents before noon from the start of his shift at 6 a.m.

Wright said the driver of the Talon had been speeding west on F Road and had been passing other cars — at times in the turn lane — when a driver traveling east on F Road made a left
turn onto 31 Road and clipped the Talon’s back end.

The Talon went onto the sidewalk on the north side of F Road, then spun across four lanes of traffic and into the fence.

“Sometimes, people become careless,” said Sgt. Derek Rosales with the police department.

“People get in a hurry and just aren’t as careful as they should be.”

Rosales said the police department also experienced a high volume of accidents, but he could not say if it was more or less than normal.

“But it was a busy traffic day,” he said.

State Patrol responded to an accident near De Beque in which one passenger was ejected but not seriously injured. Trooper Kevin Richard said another accident — at U.S. Highway 50 and Colorado Highway 141 and involving a semi-trailer and passenger van — came in less than an hour after his shift started around 4 p.m.

Temperatures reached a high of 45 degrees during the day, and consecutive days of sunshine have kept the roads clear of snow and ice, so weather isn’t to blame for the increase in crashes, Richard said.

But aside from snowstorms, Richard said, weather is less a factor than time of day and day of the week in the number of accidents.

“I cover just as many accidents in the winter as I do in the summer,” Richard said. “But most guys would agree that five-plus accidents in one day is a busy day.”

Photographer Gretel Daugherty contributed to this report.


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