A Salt Lake Tribune article, “LaVerkin Woman Dies in Interstate 15 Accident,” recently reported that a 53 year-old woman driving an Isuzu Rodeo near Washington, Utah was killed in an automobile accident on Interstate 15.

The woman from LaVerkin, Utah was traveling on I-15 near St. George when a 21-year old man, driving a Ford Freestar, fell asleep at the wheel and struck her vehicle. Sadly, she was partially ejected and died at the scene.

I offer my deep condolences to the family of the victim as they deal with this unexpected loss.

As shown by this tragic accident, sleeping and driving is a very dangerous combination. While most people realize the danger of drinking and driving, they fail to recognize that drowsy driving can be just as fatal. In fact, the National Sleep Foundation reports that 100,000 police-reported crashes are the direct result of driver fatigue each year. This results in an estimated 1,550 deaths, 71,000 injuries, and $12.5 billion in monetary losses. In Utah last year, drowsy driving killed as many people as drunk driving.