MUNFORDVILLE, Ky. - At least 11 people were killed in a fiery crash between a tractor-trailer and a church van after the truck crossed over the median on an interstate highway in south-central Kentucky, NBC reported on Friday.
The van was carrying "men, women and children," Emergency Management Director Kerry McDaniel said. He said the tractor-trailer was going south on I-65 and crossed the median around 5:30 a.m. CDT, striking the 18-passenger van head-on near Munfordville and north of Bowling Green.
The driver of the truck was killed, along with multiple passengers in the van, NBC said. McDaniel said the truck was burned beyond recognition. Its cargo included automobile wheel castings.
Other passengers in the van were transported to the hospital. They were Mennonites travelling in what is thought to be a church vehicle, NBC said.
State troopers and police from Elizabethtown and Bowling Green were assisting at the scene, while coroners from other counties were also said to be lending a hand.
I-65 was closed in both directions at the Cave City exit and NBC said it could remain so for up to eight hours. Detours were in place.
The county's judge-executive, Terry Martin, said the stretch of interstate where the accident occurred can be treacherous because it narrows from three lanes to two for motorists going south into Hart County.
"That's where it seems like the bottleneck occurs," Martin said. "I don't know if they're just not seeing or slowing down, but it gets more congested."
Martin called it a "sad, sad situation."