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Authorities: DOT Truck Caused Fatal Wreck

Posted August 1, 2007

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— The driver of a state Department of Transportation asphalt truck caused a fatal wreck in Johnston County Monday evening, authorities said Wednesday, reversing their initial findings in the case.

A Suzuki Aero driven by Walter Lee Brothers Jr., of Willow Springs, and a DOT truck driven by Carl Ray Collins, 56, of Wilson, collided near the intersection of N.C. Highway 210 and N.C. Highway 50. Both men died in the wreck, in which the truck carrying hot asphalt ended up on top of the car.

State Highway Patrol troopers initially said the Suzuki ran off the road and overcorrected in getting back on the highway, crossing the center line and colliding head-on with the DOT truck.

A witness to the accident who left the scene before authorities arrived spoke with troopers Tuesday, and a Highway Patrol accident reconstruction team then reviewed its findings, authorities said.

Authorities determined that the DOT truck went out of control as it came out of a curve on N.C. 210. The Suzuki ran off the road trying to avoid the truck, but the truck also went off the road and struck the Suzuki, authorities said.

A second collision happened after the truck and Suzuki wrecked, and the drivers left the scene without notifying troopers, authorities said. The debris left by the second collision was initially thought to be from the fatal wreck, which led to the initially mistaken analysis of the scene, authorities said.


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  • VB Aug 2, 2007

    Sending prayers.

  • K9Tucker.LoveMYcop Aug 1, 2007

    just a tragic accident - bless both of the families

  • gopanthers Aug 1, 2007

    memaofsix - My sincerest condolenses to you and your family. I know how you are feeling as I just recently lost a family member to. God bless you and your family and all others. So tragic

  • memaofsix Aug 1, 2007

    remember 2 families have lost an important member of their family. Carl Collins was my brother-in-law and DIDNOT die instantly. I personally want to thank people for their prayers and hope that no one "came forward" hoping to make money off this

  • gopanthers Aug 1, 2007

    Question - I honestly don't know. DOT is a government agency. Can you sue with regard to something like this? Or any Government Office for that matter. I've never been confronted with something like this nor has any other family member. For some reason I heard or think I heard way back when that a government agency could not be ever. True? In any event such a sad story. Live each day to its fullest because you just never know when its your turn. My prayers are with the family.

  • calleesganma Aug 1, 2007

    I also live near by this accident site, it is a awful thing no matter how it happen. This area has many hispanics that are farm help, that could be a reason that they left the scene.
    I don't know how we can get around this problem, but this may not be the only case that the witness is afraid to come forward.

  • choirgirl Aug 1, 2007

    It is a crime to leave the scene and I am very surprised that someone actually fessed up and cleared up the confusion. For whatever reason they left the scene in the first place, and God forbid had one of these men needed immediate medical attention that could have saved their lives, I'm assuming death was instant by the reports and pictures, but I am very impressed that this eyewitness, in the end, did what was right and called.

  • just my2cents Aug 1, 2007

    Lots os questionable "facts" in this story.

  • Nancy Aug 1, 2007

    I always thought that leaving the scene of an accident was a crime?

  • Tarheel True Aug 1, 2007

    It lacks humanity to leave a scene of an accident, how did those individuals know that those guys did not need help?

    Plus, cane we keep the ill-informed ignorant staements to a minimum? "I have never seen such accidents till I moved to this state," open your eyes! I travel the world and the US, and have seen accidents throughout this country and the world that will defy belief. To assign labels that wrecks are worse in one area than another just proves, "you do not get out or around much."