Highway Accident Report

Adopted: July 6, 1978
USHER TRANSPORT, INC., TRACTOR-CARGO-TANK-
SEMITRAILER OVERTURN AND FIRE
STATE ROUTE 11
BEATTYVILLE, KENTUCKY
SEPTEMBER 24, 1977

NTSB Number: HAR-78/04
NTIS Number: PB-282426/AS
PDF Document (2.92 MB)


ABSTRACT

About 9:35 a.m., e.s.t., on September 24., 1977, an Usher Transport, Inc., tractor-cargo-tank semitrailer was descending a 12.6-percent, 720-foot-long grade approaching a left curve and a railroad/highway grade crossing on Kentucky State Route 11 in Beattyville, Kentucky. The truck, which was hauling 8,255 gallons of gasoline, crossed the tracks against the flashing red lights and in front of an approaching train and struck buildings adjacent to the edge of the road. It then overturned on top of a parked car. Escaping gasoline ignited and the fire destroyed 6 buildings and 16 parked vehicles. Seven persons died in the fire.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of this accident was the loss of vehicle control because of speed excessive for highway geometry. Contributing to the accident was the truckdriver's lack of judgment when he failed to respond to the warnings and obey the rules of the road.