Utah installs catch-net cable system to solve runaway truck problem

The Utah Department of Transportation has installed a new system of catch-net cables on U.S. 89 in an attempt to stop runaway trucks.

The system is the first of its kind in Utah and located near the end of the steep downhill portion of U.S. 89 west of Garden City.

In the past two years, the area has seen an increase in crashes related to runaway trucks. The new system will provide an emergency stopping point for drivers who lose control on the road.

Earlier this month UDOT opened the new truck-escape ramp, which features a series of cable nets designed to slow and stop runaway semi-trucks coming out of Logan Canyon.

According to UDOT’s news release, the ramp uses a concrete chute to guide runaway trucks into the correct position, where cable restraints are then used to stop the trucks. When a truck hits the cables, they will wrap around the truck, causing it to lose speed and eventually stop.

“We take every opportunity we can to enhance safety on our roads,” UDOT Project Manager Tom Roylance said. “Installing this runaway truck ramp is a solution that will really make a big difference for truck drivers as well as residents, businesses and tourists in Garden City.”

The system is located at a safe distance away from the busy intersections and driveways along the highway. It provides drivers with a straight section of road and sufficient distance for them to see the ramp and safely steer onto it if there is an emergency.

Other safety measures, like a mandatory brake check area near the top of the hill and signs that show the distance to the truck escape route, have also been put into place.