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February 18, 2014

Man dies in I-75 crash

CORBIN — By John L. Ross / Staff Writer

One man was killed Monday afternoon in a single-vehicle tractor-trailer crash on I-75 in Laurel County.

According to Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Officer Steven Douglas, Shawn Eugene Sweatt, 40, of Alabama, was killed in the mid-afternoon crash.

Sweatt was driving a tractor-trailer northbound on I-75 just after 4:30 p.m. — it was loaded with non-hazardous sodium sulfite, Douglas explained.

He was working for Barnett Transportation, Inc. based in Tuscaloosa, Ala., according to the officer.

“He had picked up his load in Holt, Alabama and was headed for Akron, Ohio,” Douglas said.

However, he crashed just past the 37 mile marker — halting traffic for more than an hour during the initial investigation and recovery.

Douglas said that a preliminary investigation shows that Sweatt may have come across a slow-moving or disabled vehicle.

“He then swerved to avoid it,” Douglas said. “He left the roadway — and overturned.”

The vehicle ended up off the right side of the interstate.

Neither alcohol nor drugs are suspected in the crash, the officer said, but at press time he was unsure whether a seat belt had been used.

Several crews were on hand to assist at the scene, including the Kentucky Highway Department, London-Laurel EMS, Ambulance Inc. of Laurel County, troopers with the Kentucky State Police, the Laurel County Fire Department, Emergency Management Director Abby Hale and the Laurel County coroner.

The outside passing lane was reopened approximately an hour later, but the inner two lanes remained closed for several hours while crews worked the scene.

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