Drivers recount chaotic commute, I-64 traffic nightmare

Posted at 6:51 PM, Jan 07, 2022

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — More than 24 hours after traffic issues first emerged on Interstate 64, the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet said some vehicles still need to be towed from scenes of crashes on the interstate in Clark County.

Montgomery County Sheriff David Charles said at least 500 vehicles were cleared along I-64 Thursday, and road crews worked well into the morning on the main roads in Mount Sterling.

"I got home in my own bed about 6 AM this morning," said former state auditor Adam Edelen. "After nine hours of not moving an inch on I-64 there in Mount Sterling."

The former Democratic gubernatorial candidate was traveling home to Lexington from West Virginia--a trip that ended up taking more than 17 hours.

"It's an adventure I don't want to take on again," Edelen said, laughing.

Edelen chronicled his experience on Twitter. He said the responses were overwhelming.

"I really felt community last night," Edelen said. "I had people reaching out with warm wishes and prayers and thoughts and advice from literally all over the country."

Steven Bentley, a director at LEX 18, said when he was stuck on I-64 West, people in the same situation were reaching out to help.

"The gentleman that was next to me ended up passing out a couple of drinks," Bentley said.

Bentley said, in retrospect, he wished he had packed more than just a bottle of water.

"I was kind of freaking out a little bit," Bentley said.

His car was about a mile back from a major pile-up which officials estimated involved up to 40 cars.

"There were also multiple trucks that had jackknifed," he said. "There was a FedEx truck that had the two box trucks behind it where the cab was in the median, but his cargo was on 64."

Jessica Ness said she was also able to avoid the worst of the chaos. Although she had barely been able to move her car for ten hours, she was grateful she did not get into an accident.

"The commute to work is 30 minutes," Ness said. "I never would have thought it would have taken ten hours to get home."