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COLLISION REVIVES ISSUE OF 700 EAST INTERSECTION

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A collision Wednesday at the intersection of 3300 South and 700 East revisited the tragedy of a crossing guard killed there less than a week earlier.

Salt Lake County crossing guard Henry Tesch, 79, was sitting on a bench at the northwest corner of the intersection May 20 when a car swerved to miss another vehicle and struck him. He was pronounced dead at LDS Hospital.On Wednesday, a Salt Lake woman traveling south was injured about 8:45 a.m. as she made a left turn and was struck by an oncoming car. The driver of the northbound car, a Salt Lake man, was not injured. The impact of the crash forced the woman's car onto its roof, Salt Lake County sheriff's Sgt. Wl. Cox said.

"It looked spectacular, but it really wasn't," Cox said. However, the accident is another example of traffic problems associated with the intersection.

"It's like any major intersection in the county," but not the worst, Cox said. In response to Tesch's death and public complaint about high speeds on the road, the Department of Transportation will conduct a study of the intersection, said Dave Miles, a program development engineer for UDOT.

"We're also looking at maybe some different enforcement in that area but we're not sure what angle we'll take," Cox said. The multiple lanes of 700 East make it difficult to use radar, he said.

The Utah Highway Patrol is investigating the May 20 accident that resulted in Tesch's death, but has come up empty-handed regarding the identity of the driver who caused the accident.

A car, described as possibly a blue Buick, had turned onto 700 East from a JB's Restaurant parking lot about 1:30 p.m. and crossed three lanes of traffic to make a left turn onto 3300 South. It crossed in front of a southbound car, causing the driver to swerve and strike Tesch's bench. Meanwhile, the first car continued eastbound and did not stop.

"It seems all the witnesses did not get a plate on that car - they were watching the gray car (which struck Tesch)," said UHP Trooper Jim Bourdon. "The driver (of the gray car) said it was a lady, an elderly lady."

On Thursday, Bourdon met with the Salt Lake County attorney's office, which requested UHP re-interview all the witnesses and conduct additional tests at the scene.

Tesch was honored by the Salt Lake County sheriff's office in 1992 for rescuing a 10-year-old girl after she fell into a storm drain when a manhole cover gave way near the same intersection.

Tesch, a World War II veteran and former crew member of the Enola Gay, was the second crossing guard to die this year. Six months ago, Albert Sanborn was killed at 6200 South and 2700 west.