Someone dying from hitting debris is rare, but officers say the road junk is still very dangerous. Trooper David Barnett of the Utah Highway Patrol said road trash causes big problems for motorists daily.
"We usually get probably 5 or 6 calls a day," he said.
So what does the trooper pull off the road most often?
"Tire tread or something that someone's lost out of the vehicle, clothing, box springs mattresses, we get all different types," he said.
It was a mattress that took the life of Royce Munns of Brigham City. For a man on a motorcycle, that debris was just too much for him to take on. However, if you are in a regular sized vehicle, Barnett says the best way to keep everyone on the road safe is to hit the debris head on.
"Because if you try to swerve lanes you could cause a multi-car accident with potential injuries," he said.
That obviously goes for smaller debris, not the big stuff. The trooper’s suggestion for avoiding road junk is to keep a safe distance between you and the vehicle in front of you so you can see it. If you're hauling anything, make sure it's secured very well.
If you come across something on the roadway, give the U.H.P. a call so they can get it moved before anyone gets hurt.