Two killed in separate vehicle crashes near Moab
by Lisa J. Church
Apr 23, 2012 | 2860 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A head-on collision near Moab claimed the life of a Texas man on Saturday. Photo courtesy Utah Highway Patrol
A head-on collision near Moab claimed the life of a Texas man on Saturday. Photo courtesy Utah Highway Patrol
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Two people were killed Saturday, April 21 in separate vehicle crashes near Moab.

A Texas man died and a Phoenix, Ariz. man was critically injured Saturday evening in a head-on collision on U.S. 191 about 15 miles south of Moab. Utah Highway Patrol troopers said the 32-year-old Phoenix man was speeding southbound on U.S. 191 in a stolen Ford Taurus when the Taurus crossed the center line and collided head-on with a northbound Ford Escape. The Escape was driven by Filemon Montoya, 52, of Sweetwater, Texas. Montoya was unable to avoid the Taurus, according to a report from the UHP. The crash occurred at about 8:30 p.m.

Montoya died at the scene. The other driver, whose name has not been released, was transported to Moab Regional Hospital in critical condition. He was later flown by medical helicopter to St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction, Colo., where he remained in critical condition on Monday, according to UHP Lt. Scott Robertson.

Investigators believe the Taurus was stolen earlier in the day in Moab but further details were unavailable, Robertson said. Investigators believe the Phoenix man was intoxicated at the time of the crash, according to the UHP report. No citations were issued at the scene and no arrests had been made as of Monday morning. UHP troopers are investigating the crash, and the driver will likely face charges, officials said.

“We’re working on getting him charged,” Robertson said.

UHP officials said Montoya was wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash, but the Arizona man was not.

Earlier on Saturday, Ricky L. Rush, 37, of Salt Lake City, Utah was driving west on Kane Creek Road when his pickup truck veered off the dirt road just past Hunter Canyon, crashed into a large boulder about 30 feet off the roadway and rolled. Rush was ejected from the vehicle and the truck rolled over him. He died at the scene, according to a report from the Grand County Sheriff’s Office.

Rush was the only person in the vehicle, authorities said. The crash occurred at about 3 p.m. approximately seven miles southeast of Moab near the Grand/San Juan county line.

Rush’s body was transported to Spanish Valley Mortuary. The Grand County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the crash.


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