Local News

Beer Trucks Collide, Killing One And Closing I-85 Near Oxford

Posted April 15, 2005 4:02 a.m. EDT

— Traffic is moving again eight hours after a wreck involving two tractor-trailers carrying beer Friday morning closed both southbound lanes of Interstate 85 near Oxford in Granville County.

Investigators say the wreck, which killed one person, happened when one of the semi-trucks pulled over to the side of the interstate and was hit from behind by the second truck.

"One truck was on the southbound shoulder (and) another truck came along and ran into the back of the other truck," N.C. Highway Patrol Trooper Joe Sinnema. "After impact, the first truck on the shoulder came to rest and the other truck continued past the truck -- the driver being ejected -- and landed beyond the truck he hit. That truck came to rest in left lane of southbound 85 and burst into flames."

Crews worked Friday morning to clear I-85 of the two trucks and debris from the wreck. One truck's trailer was ripped completely open and hundreds of beer bottles were littering parts of the road and the side of I-85.

The other truck's cab appeared to be completely destroyed by flames and it had a large gash in the trailer behind the cab area.


Authorities said the drivers had briefly met and spoken to each other when they loaded their trucks in Williamsburg, Va., earlier Friday morning.

The highway patrol identified the driver killed in the accident as 60-year-old James Sherrin of Monroe, N.C.

The second drive, Bruce Richard, 45, of Chester, Va., was not injured in the wreck.