NEPHI — A Gunnison man was killed Tuesday when a hay bale fell off a trailer and hit his vehicle.

Utah Highway Patrol trooper Cameron Roden said Vern L. Hatch, 71, was killed in the accident, which occurred on state Route 28 about four miles south of Nephi.

Roden said that a pickup headed northbound on S.R. 28 was pulling a fifth-wheel trailer that had four large bales of hay on it, each bale weighing about 850 pounds. The single strap that was securing the bales to the trailer came loose, Roden said, and two bales on the driver's side fell off the trailer and into oncoming traffic.

Hatch was driving a van southbound at about 7:55 p.m. when the bales fell off the trailer. He was able to avoid the first bale, but the second bale hit the van, Roden said. The impact killed Hatch, who was wearing a seat belt.

A passenger in the van, 46-year-old Maxine Hatch of Gunnison, was injured in the accident and transported to a local hospital.

Roden said the bales should have been secured by two straps, and a citation is pending for the driver of the pickup.