By Venita Fritz
Tribune-Courier General Manager
CALVERT CITY – A fatal traffic accident in Calvert City last week at the intersection of U.S. 62 and Campbell Drive has Calvert City Police Chief David Elliott calling for changes at the busy intersection.
Elliott said he will be calling on the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet to lower the speed limit near the congested area, just west of the Exit 27 interchange with Interstate 24. Elliott said the area is too congested for the 55 mph limit.
Alexandrea “Allie” Kirtley, 16, a junior at Lyon County High School, was pronounced dead at Marshall County Hospital last Thursday afternoon after her 2006 Audi was struck by a 1991 Freightliner dump truck owned McDonald Trucking of Tiline and driven by Michael B. McDonald, 37, of Grand Rivers. McDonald was not injured.
McDonald was traveling westbound on U.S. 62, his truck loaded with limestone rock, when Kirtley pulled in front of him at the intersection. Kirtley’s vehicle was struck broadside by the truck.
Both drivers were screened for drugs and alcohol, Elliott said. Results have not been reported.
Elliott contacted the office of Kentucky Rep. Will Coursey Monday to express his concerns about the safety of the intersection.
Elliott could not say whether or not Kirtley was wearing a seatbelt, only that the details of the accident are currently under investigation.
Elliott also said a traffic light may be needed at the intersection which leads to McDonald’s, a BP gas station, Waffle House and Cracker Barrel. Other restaurants, including KFC and Willow Pond, are on the other side of the intersection.
Elliott said video of the accident obtained from the BP station revealed Kirtley’s vehicle pulled into the path of the dump truck.
He said his department will be reviewing cell phone records to ascertain whether Kirtley of Robertson was texting or talking on the phone at the time of the accident, as well as interviewing eyewitnesses.
The records have been subpoenaed for both drivers, Elliott said.
“We have actual video of the crash which is better than any eyewitness statement,” said Elliott. “This case is under investigation and it will take some time to get all the information we need to determine the exact cause.”
Kirtley was employed as a cashier and dockhand at Kentucky Dam Marina in Gilbertsville. Her funeral was held Sunday at Lakeland Funeral Home in Eddyville.