Three individuals lost their lives in three vehicular crashes, and the ensuing fire caused the evacuation of homes and businesses within a mile of I-95 in Smithfield. The incidents occurred on Wednesday, October 19, the North Carolina Highway Patrol reported on Thursday, October 20.
The first accident happened around 12 p.m. when Tacoma, Washington resident Nenard Sekulic veered from the road near Four Oaks and into a line of trees as he was driving his tractor-trailer. He was trapped inside his vehicle for hours and had to be airlifted to WakeMed Health and Hospitals in Raleigh. Charges are expected to be filed against him.
An hour later, a recreational vehicle crashed into a tractor-trailer that was hauling dry chemicals. The impact caused a fire to break out, which released a toxic column of smoke. One person died in the accident.
Finally, a collision between another RV and tractor-trailer at approximately 2:25 p.m. caused the death of two individuals within the RV.