In my practice I have seen an increase of clients coming in and calling in with citations or arrests that have originated from traveling on the AA highway (US 9). The AA highway goes from Wilder to I64 and other cities in Northeastern Kentucky. It is a lovely drive on a nice day, but deceptively dangerous. I have driven it on a foggy rainy night and can attest to that. The road is not a limited access highway as are the Interstate roads. It is very hilly and varies from four lane to three lane with a passing lane up hills to two lane. There are gravel and dirt roads as well as paved roads that intersect with the AA, not all are well lit. Eighteen wheelers, gravel trucks and farm trucks all ply the roadway at the same time. The speed limit is 55 mph and many trucks cannot maintain that speed up the steep hills. Trucks often allow their speed to exceed 70 mph down the steep hills. There are no weigh stations on the route and the weight limit on AA is 62,000 lbs and on the interstate highways the weight limit is 80,000 lbs. The trucks are often overweight and “dragon flying”, a term truckers use to mean dragging up the hills and flying down them, a dangerous practice.
State police and local law enforcement have stepped up patrols, especially at night. Even with the increased police presence the wrecks and carnage continues. Thirty eight have died in a five year span (2003 to 2008). The police often park on the side roads at the bottom of the hills where the vehicles traveling the road will be going their fastest and where most of the wrecks occur. I have recently picked up three new cases from the road including two from out of state, which leads me to believe that there has been an increase in police activity. I have also handled a wrongful death case and several personal injury cases from the road in the past. Beware of the dangers on the AA highway, don’t speed and don’t cross the double yellow lines, watch for police and check your rear view mirror for trucks. You don’t want to be a statistic or need the services of a lawyer.