Madison firefighters and Indiana Department of Transportation crew members survey the damage to a truck and a section of U.S. 421 north of Madison Thursday morning after the driver lost control of a rig hauling steel and crashed about a half-mile north of the State Road 250 intersection. (INDOT photo)
Madison firefighters and Indiana Department of Transportation crew members survey the damage to a truck and a section of U.S. 421 north of Madison Thursday morning after the driver lost control of a rig hauling steel and crashed about a half-mile north of the State Road 250 intersection. (INDOT photo)
Thursday was a bad day for U.S. 421 and the drivers on the roadway from Madison’s hilltop past Bedford.
The problems began about 6 a.m. north of Madison when a truck driver was injured, his rig demolished and a section of U.S. 421 damaged and closed for about eight hours after a tractor-trailer hauling coiled steel overturned just outside the city limits.
Indiana State Police said Roy G. Wilson, 49, of Butler, was southbound in a 2006 Peterbilt 18-wheeler hauling steel when the truck went off the roadway and Wilson overcorrected. The rig traveled a couple of hundred feet along the shoulder of the roadway before overturning and blocking both lanes of U.S. 421.
The crash dumped three rolls of coiled steel off the trailer and demolished the truck and trailer, which both came to rest upside down with the cab heavily damaged. Wilson was seriously injured and taken to King’s Daughters’ Hospital by KDH EMS and later transferred to University of Louisville Hospital.
The impact caused a leak in the fuel tank of the truck and Madison Fire Department was sent to the scene for containment. U.S. 421 was blocked with all traffic detoured at the State Road 250 intersection to the south and at County Road 400 North to the north.
The crash gouged out portions of the southbound lane of U.S. 421 and an Indiana Department of Transportation crew was sent to make repairs before the road was re-opened about 2:30 p.m.
About 4:30 p.m., traffic on a stretch of U.S. 421 between Bedford, Kentucky, and County Road 316 was shut down for a few hours after a tractor trailer hauling a chemical material tipped over.
Bedford resident Sarah Tuttle was driving a couple of cars behind the truck with her daughter when she saw it drop a tire off the road, try to correct, and then fall on its side into the culvert. When she and a few other drivers stopped to check on the man inside, oil was pouring out of the front of the truck and smoke appeared to be rolling off the brakes, Tuttle said. The driver appeared to be OK, she said.
“I asked him several times; he said he was fine. I think he was just shook up,” Tuttle said.
Tuttle and her daughter were there for about 10 minutes, long enough to call 911 and wait for Trimble County EMS, Bedford Volunteer Fire and Rescue and other first responders to arrive. She said not a lot of people were on the road until school traffic came through, and then they were routed through the scene.
First responders worked for about four hours to clean up the scene and get the truck upright.
“Thank you for your patience. Dealing with an extremely dangerous chemical requires time and specialty,” Trimble County EMS posted on its Facebook page around 8 p.m.
— From Mark Campbell and Collin Overton