Jean Fortin, 51, of Walkins, Ark., and Stephen McLaughlin, 50, of Decatur Ark., refused treatment of possible injuries at the scene despite complaining of minor pain. They were lucky to walk away after a 300-foot slide along a guardrail.
According to a report from the Kentucky State Police, the tandem was driving east on Interstate 24 when for an unknown reason Fortin, the driver, lost control of the truck and left the east side of the roadway. The truck then slammed into a guardrail that crosses U.S. 68.
The trailer remained on I-24 while the tractor portion of the rig slid approximately 300 feet down the guardrail and almost 30 feet off an overpass onto passing motorists on U.S. 68.
However, the tractor-trailer remained on the interstate where it came to rest just off the roadway on its side.
It took law enforcement crews and rescue workers five and a half hours to clean the mess up including bags of grain the truck was hauling. Traffic was diverted onto U.S. 68 and back onto I-24 to prevent long delays. Traffic was slowed down for approximately 3 miles in the eastbound lanes due to the wreck although long, consistent delays were not evident.
Trooper Richie Wright responded to the scene. He was assisted by several agencies including Trigg County Rescue, Trigg County EMS, the Trigg County Sheriff’s Department, Cadiz Police Department, Montgomery Volunteer Fire Department, Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement and the Division of Emergency Maintenance.
At nearly the same time, another 18-wheeler was involved in a less traumatic accident at the entrance to Cadiz Industrial Park 1. The truck had apparently driven off the right side of the roadway and through a guardrail, which caused the truck to get wedged between the pavement and the guardrail. No one was hurt in the incident. Cadiz Police Officer Rebecca Bleidt responded to the scene.