FIFTY-FIVE PEOPLE DIED and 14 were seriously injured in a car, bus and truck pileup and fire on a southern Russian highway, the local traffic police said Tuesday. Police spokesman Pavel Yakovenka said a car and truck traveling in opposition directions collided in fog 125 miles north of Rostov-on-Don, a city near the Ukrainian border . . . AN EARLY MORNING FIRE raced through a house Tuesday in Elgin, Ill., killing at least five people, four of them children, officials said. Firefighters said they responded to an alarm at about 2:30 a.m. and found the home in flames. The victims, believed to be an adult and four children, were found on the second floor . . . AT LEAST FOUR CHILDREN were killed in a fire early New Year's Day in a two-story wooden home northeast of Frankfort, Ind., authorities said. Clinton County Coroner Larry Rothenberger said two adults may have survived the blaze.