Man speaks after slamming into moose at freeway speeds

Posted at 3:15 PM, Mar 31, 2014
and last updated 2014-03-31 19:57:09-04

MURRAY -- James Gamble is a very lucky man.

He slammed into a moose Saturday night on Highway 40 near Strawberry Reservoir -- and survived the crash that smashed up his car. Utah Highway Patrol troopers estimate Gamble was driving about 65 miles per hour when it happened.

"All of a sudden, in the middle of the road, is this gigantic moose," Gamble said Monday. "I could hardly even react."

Gamble said he remembers braking, but couldn't avoid the collision.

"The front windshield was entirely caved in, along with the roof," UHP Trooper Dale Talbot told FOX 13 on Monday.

Gamble describes hitting the full grown moose as "like hitting a brick wall." He said after the crash, he tried to roll out of the car and got his foot stuck under the tire.

"So I had one foot inside on the brake, one foot trapped under the wheel and then people coming up behind me. I'm waving, saying, 'Help! Help!" he said.

Gamble credited passers-by with helping, including one woman who put him in her car to stay warm as he waited for an ambulance. He was flown by medical helicopter to Intermountain Medical Center where he underwent surgery.

Trooper Talbot, who responded to the crash, said it is amazing Gamble wasn't killed.

"I was really impressed how well the guy was doing considering how hard the moose hit," he said.

It isn't Gamble's first brush with death: Last year, he was T-boned in a crash. He said in 1993, he was shot in the head during a convenience store robbery in Salt Lake City.

"There must be some reason I'm not being called home yet," he said Monday. "It makes me thankful."