(10/01/2002)
Three college students were killed Saturday when their car skidded in front of an overweight coal truck on U. S. 60 in Kanawha County. The deaths were added to a list of about 15 people killed in collisions with the heavy trucks during the past two years, while dozens of others have been seriously injured.

Memorial and funeral services are being held in St. Albans this week.

Ammy M. Webb and Anna Hoyt Busse, both 22 from St. Albans and Matthew A. Berlin, 21, of Athens, Ohio were recovered from a tangle of flattened metal after if went under the coal truck. The truck then pushed the car back across the center line into a hillside.

Police said the incident was an accident, but the Public Service Commission cited the driver for exceeding the weight limits.

Coal trucks, whose weight limits are 65,000 to 80,000 pounds, depending on what kind of road they are traveling, have been running well over twice the legal limit for years in the mountain state, with state officials ignoring enforcement. The Wise administration reports they have stepped-up enforcement.

Recent efforts by coal companies and elected officials have been directed toward making the overweight coal trucks legal.


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