A newly released Nevada Highway Patrol video clearly illustrates the hazards of mountain driving, showing an out-of-control vehicle slamming into a law enforcement pickup on State Route 156 during snowy weather in November.
The Highway Patrol said troopers narrowly avoided injury in the crash. Trooper Jason Buratczuk said the video highlights how important it is to slow down in wintry weather, in particular in the Lee Canyon area.
“We are releasing this video because we are coming up on the busiest time of the year on Mount Charleston,” Buratczuk said in a press release. “During winter school break Mount Charleston is at capacity every weekend. Motorists are reminded that road conditions can change very rapidly on the mountain. … Just because the speed limit is 55 mph doesn’t mean you should do 55 mph.”
Buratczuk said the incident happened at 3:25 p.m. on Nov. 28. Troopers were near the top of the road, enforcing chain or snow tire restrictions for vehicles.
“As troopers were standing next to two Highway Patrol vehicles a Cadillac Escalade coming down the mountain was traveling too fast for the weather conditions and lost control,” Buratczuk said.
The Cadillac slid about 400 feet and struck a trooper’s pickup. One trooper was in his vehicle and drove forward to avoid being struck. Two other troopers “ran for cover,” Buratczuk said.
Inside the Cadillac were three adults and three children. All were transported to University Medical Center with injuries ranging from minor to serious, Buratczuk said. The driver was given a citation for too fast for weather conditions. The driver was not identified.
“Our troopers came very close to being seriously injured or killed by a careless driver,” Buratczuk said.