Stretch of Interstate 65 Most Deadly in Kentucky

June 3, 2010

A 50-mile stretch of Interstate 65 in Kentucky has been the scene of several deadly high-profile crashes, including a recent one that killed 11 people.

Kentucky State Police data does show I-65 accounting for more fatal wrecks than any other interstate in Kentucky, with 20 to 25 happening each year. State police figures put about half of those wrecks in the 50-mile stretch of two-lane interstate between Cave City and Elizabethtown.

But, statistically, the interstate between Elizabethtown and the Louie B. Nunn Parkway is not the leader in crashes. Between 2,300 and 2,700 wrecks have happened on Interstate 75 annually since 2003, compared to about 2,000 along I-65.

“The cabinet can’t speculate on the causes of particular crashes; however, we continue to share with motorists the importance of paying attention to the road and obeying speed limits — keys for staying safe on our highways,” said Kentucky Transportation Cabinet spokesman Mark Brown. “Motorists are responsible for adjusting their driving habits according to roadway conditions.”

One of the more high-profile I-65 fatal wrecks happened in March when a tractor-trailer crossed the interstate median near Munfordville and smashed into a family’s van, killing 11 people. State police and federal officials say the driver may have been on a cell phone just before the wreck.

Brown said sleeping drivers, distracted drivers, lack of seat belts and inclement weather conditions are the most common factors cited as contributing to the wrecks.

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