NewsZero Fatalities


A Utah woman survived the crash when a distracted driver hit her head-on, what she wants you to know now

Posted at 11:29 AM, Mar 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-21 13:29:18-04

Julie Barr was on her way from Utah to Colorado to see a friend in hospice care, when she was hit head-on by a distracted driver on a county road near Denver.

A witness who stopped at the accident scene told investigators the driver in the pickup truck that hit Julie's car had been going over the center line before the crash.

Julie doesn't remember the crash. She says, "Nobody really knows how I survived the accident, and I wasn't expected to survive."

She doesn't remember anything after the crash either until a few weeks later when she woke up in the hospital with too many injuries to count. That included broken bones, internal injuries and she even suffered strokes.

"People who know me know I have a positive attitude and a will to survive and that has carried me forward, and I'm so grateful everyday that I'm alive. I don't want people to mistake that, or overlook the fact that my life has completely changed because of someone else's decision to drive distracted," Julie says.

Texting and driving is a big reason people get distracted behind the wheel. It takes about 4.6 seconds to read or send a text. If you're traveling at 60 miles per hour, you can go the length of a football field in that time.

But there are other distractions in the car as well. Zero Fatalities offers these tips to Drive Focused. Don't answer your phone. Don't change the music or use your navigation system as you're driving. Make sure you and your vehicle are ready to go before you even start the engine. And, never reach for anything in the car while you're moving.

Julie says now, she's even more aware of other drivers and their bad behaviors. "I'm seeing cars swerving in their lane and going over the line and then you pass them and they're either on their phone or eating or doing their makeup or looking down to grab something and you always see them not looking at the road and I just want to yell at them and say pay attention!"

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