Last fall our family took a ride to the Park City Winter Sports Park. The luge and bobsled runs looked very impressive. I imagined the rush it would be to take the ride down either run. I imagined racing down the course at high speeds, seeing iced walls below me and on either side. I would assume that those who engineered the curves and walls made it reasonably safe for a trained participant. Wow, what a ride. So far I haven't heard of any serious injuries or fatalities on the luge or bobsled runs. I'd love to take that ride some day.
Recently on the way home from a Jazz game, I boarded my bobsled vehicle (car) and started the ride down the I-15 run to the offramp at 10600 South. What a frightful experience. This is not the first time I have made this treacherous ride. Unlike the luge or bobsled at Park City, I was not the only one on this tight-walled course. There were many others, not the least of which were huge trucking rigs.In the dark of the night and with light rain, it was extremely difficult to follow the road. The concrete barriers on each side were as black as the road, with no reflective markers or paint. Unfortunately, if I rounded a curve too tightly, my car would not slide up the concrete barrier like the luge or bobsled. Rather there would be a terrible accident, blocking traffic for hours with emergency equipment unable to get there.
On other highways around the country, I have seen highly reflective paint and even white reflective caps that rise above the concrete highway surface. The Department of Transportation needs to wake up and demand that the narrow I-15 luge/bobsled run be more clearly marked, including very bright and reflective lines and reflective caps.
Probably the worst locations are where lanes of traffic change from the old east to west lanes and back again. The absolute worst is the southbound curve just before where the old 7200 South offramp was located. The lines are almost impossible to see, especially when drivers are distracted by the old painted lines.
The dangers of I-15 are out of control. I'd like to live long enough to take the safe ride at Park City on the luge or bobsled run.
David K. Swenson