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Safety changes after Carrollton bus crash likely saved lives in Scott County bus fire

Published: Sep. 28, 2021 at 3:24 PM EDT
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SCOTT CO., Ky. (WKYT) - A bus carrying the Scott County football team caught on fire Friday on I-75.

It was a scene that looked like another one 33 years ago, the Carrollton bus crash. However, there was one big difference - no one was hurt.

“I felt a physiological response seeing that, you know it took me back for a minute,” said Carrollton bus crash survivor Harold Dennis.

Around 33 years ago, Larry Mahoney caused the nation’s worst drunk driving accident to date. 27 people were killed after a church trip to Kings Island. One of the victims, Dennis’s best friend, died right next to him.

“I’ve dealt with some survivor’s guilt, not being able to help that day, but obviously his spirit continues to live through me,” Dennis said. “I’ve vowed to continue to leave footprints.”

Dennis says changes were made to buses, changes he says saved lives this time. He says buses now use diesel fuel, less flammable seat material and have more exits.

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They’re changes Dennis says created a different reality for the Scott County football team after their frightening night.

“It’s been my mission along with some other survivors to ensure that those lives were not lost in vain,” Dennis said.

The Scott County High School football team is back in action Friday when they take on Great Crossing.

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