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Mom, toddler among 9 wounded in fiery NKY crash

Posted: 2:52 PM, Mar 27, 2016
Updated: 2016-03-28 19:27:09-04

FOSTER, Ky. – A semi caught fire after crashing with a car, closing the AA Highway in Bracken County in both directions Sunday afternoon.

Haley Arnold, 24, of Foster, Kentucky, was headed north on the AA Highway at about 12:30 p.m. and stopped to make a left turn onto Eden Ridge Road, according to a crash report. Christopher Gies, 32, of Butler, Kentucky, rear-ended Arnold's Oldsmobile Alero sedan with his Chrysler minivan, the crash report states.

That collision pushed the Oldsmobile into the path of a southbound semi-trailer, driven by Donald McGowen, 51, of Houston, Texas, according to the crash report. The impact threw a passenger in Arnold's car -- Katie Chamberlain, 24, of Mount Olivet, Kentucky -- out of the vehicle.

The truck went off the side of the highway and stopped in a ditch, where it caught fire.

Nine people were hospitalized, according to the Bracken County Sheriff's Office. Three of them were flown via medical helicopter, the rest were driven.

Katie Chamberlain and her son, Damon. Photo via Facebook

Chamberlain was being treated for spinal injuries, according to Arnold's parents, while Chamberlain's 2-year-old son, Damon Cissna, suffered a fractured skull. He, too, was a passenger in Arnold's car, after she picked them up for an Easter get-together, Arnold's parents said.

Details about the severity of the others' injuries was not immediately available. Several children between the ages of 4 and 12 were in Gies' minivan.

The highway was closed for hours at the crash scene between Riverton Road and Beacon Drive as crews worked to clear debris and move the truck's cargo to another vehicle.

WCPO has contacted the Bracken County Sheriff's Office to ask if any charges will be filed against any of the drivers.