(Earlington, Kentucky – April 30, 2012)
The 76-year-old driver of a 2002 Toyota pickup truck, James A. Johnson of Madisonville, KY, was killed instantly late Monday morning about 11:30, when he turned off U.S. Highway 41 onto West Moss Street, and was struck by a CSX freight train which carried his truck nearly a third of a mile before stopping.
Although the West Moss Street crossing is equipped with flashing lights and bells, it has no crossing gates to prevent tragedies such as occurred Monday. When a driver is southbound on U.S. 41 and makes a right turn onto West Moss, he or she immediately encounters the CSX railroad tracks.
The victim was pronounced dead at the scene by Hopkins County Coroner Dennis Mayfield. Other agencies responding to the tragedy included the Kentucky State Police, Earlington Volunteer Fire Dept., Medical Center Ambulance Service and the Kentucky State Highway Dept.
The CSX/West Moss crossing has now been the site of six accidents, injuring two people in addition to the fatality Monday.