Southern Indiana garbage truck accident report released

Jeffersonville, IN - By Connie Leonard - bio | email
Posted by Charles Gazaway - email

JEFFERSONVILLE, IN (WAVE) - The city of Jeffersonville has released its initial findings after investigating a deadly chain reaction crash on May 6 which involved a Jeffersonville sanitation truck. The crash on Indiana Highway 60 outside of Sellersburg killed 19-year-old Bethany Burrier of Borden, IN whose car was stopped in traffic.

The report finds some serious issues with the driver of that garbage truck, 45-year-old Roger Crum of Marysville.

Among the findings in the report are that Crum, who was headed to the Deam Lake area to unload for the day, had been on the job for about six hours when the crash happened. Earlier that morning, Crum had stopped by a city facility to get a tire changed.

The report also says that a message for drivers was sent over the two-way radio letting them know about the construction on Highway 60 for paving repair. According to the report, Crum told investigators he must have been out of the truck when that message was sent.

Crum was returning to the waste facility around noon, and told investigators he didn't slow down because he never saw the construction signs or flaggers. But what is most interesting is investigators say Crum admitted he took two prescription drugs for back pain before starting his shift. Both have side effects of drowsiness.

"This individual driver had a prescription for two medications, Flexeril and Lortab," said Jeffersonville City Attorney Larry Wilder. "He had a prescription for those medications since June of 2009. He became an employee in the city in April 2009. The city was not informed in June of 2009 that this individual was prescribed these medications and this individual did not provide that information to anyone at the city."

There were others involved in the accident that were hurt, but not interviewed for the report. Those include Crum's co-worker, who is still being treated for his injuries.

The information has been sent to the Clark County Prosecutor's Office for review.

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