PENDER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) -- Two people are dead after they ran a stop sign in Pender County this morning and smashed into a tractor-trailer. The impact split their car in two.
Troopers say two men from Virginia were going east on NC 53, drove through the stop sign and flashing red light and ran right into Linwood Copeland's tractor trailer heading south on US 421. The semi pushed the Nissan Sentra into the parking lot at Caison's Body Shop and hit three parked cars.
"I was pulling this blue car around and I was sitting right there and I heard a big bang and I'd seen that big truck coming toward me and I jumped out of that blue car and run, left it running and all," said Donald Caison, who owns the body shop. Caison said he ran over to the wreck and nudged the victims. "I could tell neither one of them were breathing."
Caison says he sees a couple wrecks at that intersection a year. He says last year, a baby flew through the window when a pick-up truck didn't stop and hit a semi.
"Forty-five mile per hour speed through here," Caison said, "There is a stop sign on both sides of the road and a speed bump thing and a flashing light down there, but people don't pay attention to it. They don't see it. People say the intersection's bad. The intersection is not bad, it's the people driving."
Highway Patrol has not yet released the names of the two people who died, because the next of kin has not been notified.