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Two killed in wrong-way Raleigh crash

Posted July 15, 2012
Updated July 16, 2012

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— Two people were killed and another injured early Sunday in a wrong-way crash on Interstate 40 at Jones Sausage Road in Raleigh, police said.

Carolina Elizabeth Gonzalez Linares, 28, of Morrisville, was driving a 2009 Toyota sedan east on I-40 West around 2:30 a.m. when she collided head-on with a Ford truck in the left lane at 65 mph, according to a wreck report.

A 911 caller told an emergency dispatcher that one of the vehicles caught fire after the crash.

Linares and a passenger in the Ford truck, Job Misrael Hernandez, 17, of Raleigh, were killed.

The other driver, Natanael Bartolome Hernandez, 21, also of Raleigh, was taken to WakeMed, where he was listed in critical condition Sunday night.

A man who witnessed the wreck told WRAL News that Natanael Hernandez was passing him on the left when the crash happened. He said he hadn't noticed Linares' vehicle until then.

He said the force of impact made a loud bang and lifted both vehicles into the air.

The results of alcohol tests on Linares are pending, police said.

The westbound lanes of I-40 were closed in the area for more than four hours after the wreck.


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  • calldonna Jul 18, 2012

    Many have wondered how it is that people are driving the wrong way on the interstates. I've seen several people almost do it and I myself almost did the first time I encountered the (then new) wide interchanges over the 6-8 lane interstates. They aren't marked for you to follow lines to the entrance ramp which seems so far away until you're used to it. If you're used to entering highways/interstates that are still the smaller 2-lanes both directions then you feel like you should be making a sharper turn left onto the on-ramp (and that ends up landing you on the exit ramp for the other direction!). I've watch several people accidentally do that and then stop and reverse back out so that then can head the rest of the way across the wide interchange to use the correct on-ramp! It is much easier than you think when it's late at night and there are no cars sitting at the light of the exit ramp you almost entered! And there aren't many/any "wrong way" signs once you're on the highway

  • tarheelforlife2 Jul 16, 2012

    Job was in one of my classes at Enloe. he spoke perfect english. he was a star on the track squad. he was a great musician. he loved God. his favorite verse was Proverbs 21:21. he was one of the nicest boys i knew. i was alone one day after sports practice and, after only talking to me a handful of times before, sat beside me and talked to me until my ride came.

    dont judge a person based on their last name.

  • working for deadbeats Jul 16, 2012

    Why are so many confused on how a car can end up going the wrong direction? It's called making a wrong turn.

  • determined2win Jul 16, 2012

    Sad to hear of someone losing their life like this, REGARDLESS of what country they were from. But HOW did the car end up going the wrong direction on the highway?

  • seriousegurll Jul 16, 2012

    Natanael is my sisters boyfriend. And Job is his little brother. They are both great young men. "Nate" is a youth leader at his local church and Job was also a God fearing young man that had a great heart and a passion for world missions. They were driving home from having a family dinner with my parents in our home in Jacksonville, NC. We had a great family time that night. They drove home bc they are respectful young men who would not sleep at the home of an unmarried young lady. (Yes, men with old fashioned values still exist!) It just brakes my heart that innocent little Job's life was lost. Nate is in very critical care and we are praying for a speedy recovery. As for Job, he is now with the Lord so let his soul rest in peace with Jesus. As for the rude racist comments, the Hernandez family is from Puerto Rico (USA territory!) and they all are fluent in English. They have just as much right to be here as any American, for they ARE American citizens! God bless the Hernandez family.

  • mmcc08 Jul 16, 2012

    Carolina was an American citizen who spoke English fluently. Her family and friends are in shock because this incident is totally out-of-character for Carolina. She was not a heavy drinker and did not drink and drive. Those who know her suspect that her food or drink may have been drugged. This is a tragedy for both families. Please treat it as such. Everyone who has been touched by this deadly accident deserves your sympathy, support, and respect. Please stop posting inappropriate, judgmental, and racist comments.

  • jjsmith1973 Jul 16, 2012

    @ Ven, that is a good idea and I like that you looked at the issue and looked for an answer of prevention instead of blame. For everyone that is commenting on where the cops should have or haven't been. They were busy setting up their DWI check point which nabs usually very minor offenses and very low b.a.c. people. When they could be out patrolling. Not saying that they would have stopped this accident but would have had a better chance too opposed to sitting at a checkpoint.

  • BigUNCFan Jul 16, 2012

    We have seen quite a few of these wrong way deals the last few weeks and months.

  • godnessgracious2 Jul 16, 2012

    How about sensors that can detect cars moving the wrong way up the ramps and can say in multiple languages "You are going the wrong way, turn around!" Lots of lights and sirens blaring also. The whole ramp should light up like the fourth of july. I think if this is cheaper than the one way spike strips it would be better, maybe too costly still.

  • 2gurlz2boyzMom Jul 16, 2012

    That's weird, last night they said this happened near Western Blvd, which would make it close to Jones Franklin Road. Does anyone know the true answer?
    Did she not have lights on? Why was she not seen before the accident?