Vehicle Accident Requires Rescuers to Brave Swift-Flowing Price River


Several local agencies responded to a call at midnight on Thursday to rescue three people from a vehicle that had that had apparently driven off of Highway 6 and into the Price River. The two-hour rescue was complicated by runoff making the water especially fast flowing and dangerous.

KSL reported that the truck, pulling a trailer loaded with ATVs was driven by John Dunkley of Layton, who “apparently fell asleep at the wheel”. KSL received information from the UHP that the truck drifted off the road, and into the river. They reported that the other passengers were Dunkley’s wife, Kathleen, and the couple’s 7-year-old grandson.

The Helper Fire and Rescue Team, as well as crews from the Price Fire Department, Carbon County Search and Rescue, Utah Highway Patrol, Price City Police Department and Carbon County Ambulance coordinated a swift water rescue after responding to the page for a 10-50 PI, a vehicle accident with injuries, at mile marker 235.

Gary Harwood, of the Helper Fire and Rescue team, said the rescue was probably the most treacherous he had ever seen. He said that the “deep, swift and cold” water made for a very dangerous and very harrowing experience. Though he said that team had “fished a lot of people from the river”, last night’s rescue was “probably the hairiest one [they had] ever been on.”

Fortunately, none of the rescuers was seriously injured. One required x-rays on an ankle that was injured when he stumbled on a rock in the cold water, but according to Harwood, “He is okay.”


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