Crime History: Deadliest drunken-driving crash on record kills 27

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Local,Transportation,Crime,Scott McCabe,Crime History

On this day, May 14, in 1988, a drunk driver traveling the wrong way near Carrollton, Ky., struck a school bus carrying a church youth group. The crash and ensuing fire killed 27, the deadliest drunken-driving crash in history.

Sixty-seven church members from Radcliff, Ky., were returning from an amusement park trip when, at 11 p.m., a pickup driven by Larry Mahoney hit the bus nearly head on.

Nobody was seriously hurt by the impact, but the front door of the bus was jammed shut. The bus burst into flames, and dozens of children became trapped in the fire and smoke.

A jury convicted Mahoney of 27 counts of manslaughter, and he served 11 years in prison.

The tragedy prompted changes in school bus safety, the biggest being the increase of emergency exits.

-Scott McCabe

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