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Fatal Moore collision latest wrong-way wreck on US 1

Posted January 23, 2014

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— The head-on collision late Wednesday that killed two drivers is fourth fatal wreck involving drivers heading the wrong way on U.S. Highway 1 between Southern Pines and Sanford in the last six years, according to authorities.

A Toyota SUV driven by Terrell Abbott, 36, of Austin, Texas, was southbound in the northbound lanes of U.S. 1 north of Southern Pines at about 10:45 p.m. when it slammed into a Toyota sedan driven by Jasmine Wicker, 20, of Sanford, the North Carolina State Highway Patrol said.

The vehicles burst into flames following the crash, forcing troopers to close the highway in both directions for three hours.

"All her friends, her best friends, y'all got to hold on and stay strong for me," Wicker's mother, Shonda Moncrease, said Thursday.

Wicker was driving home from work when she was killed, her family said.

"“She was just a kind, sweet girl," said Wicker's grandmother, Marcelene McLean. "The whole family is trying to figure out why, but we have no answers."

Troopers said they also have no answers either regarding where Abbott got on the highway or why was driving in the wrong direction.

"As far as alcohol use or anything else, we don't know yet," First Sgt. Eric Ritter said.

Between 2008 and 2011, three wrong-way collisions on U.S. 1 near Sanford resulted in deaths.

In November, a Vass police officer used his car to stop a driver heading north on U.S. 1 in the southbound lanes a couple of miles from where Wednesday's crash occurred. Both the officer and the other driver survived. Investigators have said they believe the other driver had a medical condition.

A spokesman for the North Carolina Department of Transportation said that, for every fatal crash that doesn't involve impaired drivers or excessive speed, traffic engineers examine the stretch of highway where the crash occurred to determine if better signage, guardrails or other safety improvements are needed.

"Do Not Enter" and "Wrong Way" signs are already posted along U.S. 1 near the site of Wednesday night's crash.

"My troopers take all of these personally. We don’t want anybody to die on the highway,” Ritter said.


This story is closed for comments.

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  • 22nessa22 Jan 27, 2014

    so sad..that is why I hate driving at night!

  • Ijaz Fahted Jan 24, 2014

    View quoted thread

    LOL you think we should put a man standing at every ramp with stop sticks all day and night long so he can throw them out into the road when a car is coming the wrong way.

    You might want to read up on what a "stop stick" is and how it works.

  • Ijaz Fahted Jan 24, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Because sometimes these things malfunction and cause punctures when they don't compress as you drive over them and they are also not made to be driven over at speeds beyond what you would drive in a parking lot.

    I guess I'll never understand how these wrong way collisions occur. When there is a lane to your right divided by a median or guard rail and no lane to your left, you are going the wrong way. It's not a hard thing to grasp.

  • North Carolina Cutie Jan 23, 2014

    Those new turn around islands confuse people especially at night. The elder ones do get confused they should have never put those on the highways just the left the straight across openings.

  • justabumer Jan 23, 2014

    I have noticed a number of locations where "wrong way" signs are posted in an attempt to avoid such a situation. The only problem is that most of those I have seen are posted at such an angle that it's difficult to determine which lane of traffic they are directed towards. I often travel this section of US1 when driving to Chapel Hill but haven't noticed if the signs there are unclear or not.

  • rougemontredneck Jan 23, 2014

    Headlights coming AT you are never a good thing....no matter which direction you are going. So horrible for all involved. Spike strips are a good idea and would certainly prevent this type of thing. You will not go far or fast on 4 flat tires.

  • AConservativePerson Jan 23, 2014

    They should put those stop sticks that puncture your tires if you are going the wrong way on each of the exits and entrances to get on the highway. that would stop the people unless they are really impaired.

  • dbayard814 Jan 23, 2014

    Never drive in the left hand lane of a divided highway after dark, unless you can see the tailights of the car ahead you in the same lane. In most cases, the driver driving on the wrong side of the road is impaired will remain in the left lane believing they are using the right hand lane. Also, many impaired drivers forget to turn on their headlights making a collision with them nearly unavoidable.

  • scubagirl2 Jan 23, 2014

    short of being blind drunk, I just don't get how this happens so much. AND it seems to be happening more

    Condolences to the family of all involved.

  • Obamacare prevails again Jan 23, 2014

    View quoted thread

    This was my first thought as well. Other than cost, I don't see why this hasn't been done.