ELIZABETHTOWN, KY (WAVE) – A six-vehicle crash left three people injured – one of the critically – and shut down all southbound lanes of Interstate 65 in Elizabethtown for several hours at mile marker 94 Monday afternoon. That's just south of the Elizabethtown exit.
According to Master Trooper Norman Chaffins of Kentucky State Police, a Freightliner tractor trailer operated by Jerry D. Compton, 60, of Leitchfield rear-ended a Ford Escape driven by John R. Warner, 61, of Goshen, KY around 2:30 p.m. Warner's SUV went airborne and overturned, landing in the left hand lane of the interstate.
Chaffins said the Freightliner continued southbound and, hitting a Pontiac Montana that was stopped in traffic. It was driven by Tanya R. Martz, 38, of Greensburg, KY. Her car then rear-ended a Ford Transit Connect, operated by Natalie F. Mudd, 35, of Shelbyville. The Freightliner then hit the Transit, pushing it into the back of a Volvo tractor trailer driven by Steve D. Mabe II, 44, of Middletown, OH. The Transit also hit a Jeep Commander in the passenger door. David Pruett, 49, of Noblesville, IN was driving the Jeep.
Warner was airlifted to University of Louisville Hospital with life-threatening injuries. Chaffins said Warner was in critical condition Monday night.
Mudd and Martz were taken to Hardin Memorial Hospital in Elizabethtown. Mudd was later taken by ambulance to University Hospital. Martz was treated and released.
Police set up a detour using the southbound ramps of US 62 over the interstate at the crash location. As a result, US 62 was extremely congested, and the backup affected other parts of town, including traffic on Dixie Highway (US 31W) and KY 313. I-65 reopened just before 6 p.m.
KSP was continuing to investigate the cause of the crash.
This is at least the third multi-vehicle crash on I-65 in Hardin County since Saturday. Two separate accidents just a few miles south of Elizabethtown shut down all lanes of I-65 in both directions for six hours on Saturday. Six members of a Wisconsin family were killed and two others were injured in a fiery crash on the northbound side of I-65. Three people were injured in an accident 16 minutes after the first one on the southbound side of I-65.