The North Carolina Highway Patrol say a chain-reaction car crash that occurred on I-540 in Wake County has left one woman dead. The fatal auto accident took place Monday night, on the westbound lanes near Leesville Road.
According to police, the victim, who was from Pittsboro, was driving her 2010 Chevrolet Cobalt behind a Durham man who was driving a 2003 Chrysler Town and Country. Both vehicles came to a stop because of traffic slowdown from another crash which had taken place earlier. However, the driver in the vehicle behind the dead woman failed to stop. Instead, she slammed her 2015 Chevrolet Cruze right into the victim’s car.
The force of the impact pushed the Cobalt into the Town and Country van, killing the victim instantly.
The driver of the Cruze was charged with misdemeanor death by motor vehicle and failure to reduce speed. She was transported to WakeMed with serious injuries. The condition of the driver of the Town and Country was unavailable and it is unclear whether he was injured in the crash.
Approximately three hours before the fatal accident, several other accidents had happened on I-540 west, which led to some of the lanes of the highway being shut down, causing the traffic slowdown which had caused the drivers in the fatal car crash to stop.
In one accident, a FedEx truck crashed into a car, injuring the driver of the truck. Right around the same time as that crash, a tractor trailer crashed with a car, causing the truck to jackknife. Fuel began leaking from the truck and authorities closed all the westbound lanes of the road.
Law enforcement say there were at least two other accidents in the westbound lanes, all contributing to the backup of traffic leading up to the fatal car crash.
Rear-end collisions are one of the most common types of car accidents which occur. In many of these accidents, the driver of the second car was not paying attention to what was going in front of them and failed to notice the front vehicle slowing down or stopping. Distracted driving, drowsy driving, speeding, and driving under the influence are often involved in these crashes.
Tragically, the victim in this crash was pronounced dead at the scene and her family must now struggle with not only the loss of their loved one, but also the horrific way in which she was killed. Although criminal charges have been brought against the driver who caused the fatal crash, the victim’s family should also seek the advice of a dedicated North Carolina wrongful death attorney to find out what legal recourse they may have for their pain and loss.