An Adair resident and a Russell Springs resident died yesterday as a result of a three vehicle collision on Hwy. 80 that subsequently shut down the highway for approximately two hours. Columbia Police Department responded to the collision where they found an individual entrapped in one of the vehicles.
After preliminary investigation, results indicate that Jimmie Bennett, 74, of Columbia, was operating a 2010 Hyundai Sonata west bound on Ky. Hwy 80 when his vehicle struck the rear of a 2000 Ford van being operated by 49-year-old Michael Bush of Columbia. The collision caused Bennett’s vehicle to cross into the east bound lane of traffic where it was struck in the drivers side of the vehicle by a 2016 GMC being operated by Paul Banks, 80, and his passenger Dwight Banks, 60, both of Russell Springs.
Bennett was pronounced deceased at the scene. Bush and Paul and Dwight Banks were all treated on the scene and transported to TJ Health Columbia by Adair EMS. Bush was treated and released.
Paul Banks was flown by Air Methods helicopter to the University of Kentucky hospital where he was listed in critical condition.
Dwight Banks was also flown to the University of Kentucky hospital by Air Evac, but the helicopter was forced to make an emergency landing at Casey County Hospital when Banks’ condition became severely unstable. Banks succumbed to his injuries shortly after landing and was pronounced deceased.
Hwy. 80 remained closed for approximately two hours during investigation. CPD Sgt. Gary Roy is in charge of the collision investigation and was assisted by Sgt. Jr Murphy, officers from CPD, Adair County EMS, and the Columbia-Adair County Fire Department.