The state Highway Patrol says a Ford Explorer was traveling north on Interstate 95 near Kenly, going home to New York after a vacation in Charleston, when it crashed near mile marker 110.
The vehicle's driver, Michelle Enriquez, told state troopers that she dropped a cup on the floorboard.
"She looked down on the floorboard and when she looked back up, she was off the road in the median. She overcorrected and the vehicle got into a skid," according to State Trooper Lee Cox.
Seven-year-old Ezekiel Skyers was seated in the rear cargo-bay. There was no seatbelt to hold him in. Nine-year-old Patrice Skyers shared her seatbelt with a 4-year-old in the backseat. Patrice also died.
Seatbelts should not be shared, according to Cox.
"It just will not work that way. Every child needs to be secured in his or her own seatbelt," said Cox.
Everyone who properly wore a seatbelt walked away with minor scrapes and injuries.
The single-vehicle wreck happened around 10 a.m., just in front of an 18-wheeler driven by J.W. Moore of Florida.
"I saw it lean. That's when I held my brakes and, sure enough, it came on over in the right hand lane," said Moore of Enriquez's vehicle.
Moore says the vehicle rolled over at least three times.
"It just kept flipping and sliding. It would flip once, then slide, and then flip again," he said.
Three adults and two children were taken to Wilson Memorial Hospital, where they were treated and released.
The Highway Patrol says the 18-wheeler is not to blame for the accident, nor are the Explorer's Goodyear tires, though the force of the crash tore them off. The Highway Patrol says inattention and possibly excessive speed caused the accident.
Enriquez was out on bail Friday.
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