(Henderson County, Kentucky – October 9, 2013)
The driver of a semi-trailer truck loaded with soybeans was killed Wednesday afternoon at about 3:45 P.M. when he turned off U.S. Highway 60 and onto the entry driveway of Triple E Farms midway between Reed and Spotsville, KY only to be hit by a CSX freight train as the train and the truck were both travelling west on parallel pathways and the unknowing trucker was struck on the blind spot of his cab’s passenger side by the train.
Terry Clark, 70, of Corydon, KY turned and drove across the unmarked, unguarded and dangerous intersection, obviously totally unaware of the approaching train he was blocked from seeing. The cab of his tractor was dragged about two-tenths of a mile to the Crooked Road crossing, but the victim was ejected through the windshield of his vehicle and probably died of blunt force trauma, according to Deputy Henderson County Coroner Sheila Patterson.
Without active protective systems like flashing lights, bells and crossing gates to give warning of the approach of one of the four CSX trains that cross there daily at a top allowable speed of 40 mph, the victim was in an untenable position. It is virtually certain that lights and gates would have prevented this incident. Both CSX and Operation Lifesaver know lights and gates are the most effective type of protection at railroad crossings. Studies that have been conducted over fifty years ago confirm that lights and gates offer the ability to drastically reduce the number of vehicle/train accidents by as much as 96%.
Henderson County Sheriff’s Dept. Deputy Harvey Sizemore was in charge of the investigation of the tragic accident.