Pearl man dies in wreck on I-20 at Bovina

Published 12:00 am Friday, May 17, 2002

[05/17/02]A Pearl man was killed Thursday when the eastbound tractor-trailer truck he was driving ran off the interstate and crashed between a bridge pillar and an embankment at the Bovina exit, authorities said.

David A. Luckett, 22, 120-A Summer Ridge Drive, was on a return trip to Jackson from Vicksburg on Interstate 20. His truck was carrying crane equipment his Jackson-based company, Bracken Construction, had rented to a company doing construction work on the USS Cairo Museum project in Vicksburg National Military Park.

“An eyewitness who was driving behind him said it looked like he fell asleep and ran off the road,” Mississippi Highway Patrol Trooper Ray Steed said.

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Luckett apparently was not wearing his seatbelt since he was thrown from the vehicle, Steed said.

Warren County Coroner John Thomason said an autopsy will be performed tonight at Mississippi Mortuary Services in Pearl.

The guard rail protecting the pillar was run over, and the truck appeared to have driven over it and through the narrow space between it and the embankment. It came to rest with its cab destroyed, but with all but its rear wheels having made it through the narrow space.

“It doesn’t look like you could get a car by there,” Trooper Jake Coffie said of the space the truck almost went through.

Luckett had worked with Bracken Construction for about a year, company vice president Jeff Bracken said. He was not married, Bracken said.

Luckett’s load, which he had left Jackson about 6 a.m. to retrieve, included a 15,000-pound counterweight, Bracken said.

Bracken said his company, in business since 1957, had not had such a wreck happen before.