2 dead after tractor-trailer, pickup truck collide in Iredell County

IREDELL COUNTY, N.C. — Police said two people were killed after a tractor-trailer collided with their pickup truck in Iredell County late Thursday night.

The wreck happened around 11 p.m. on Wiggins Road at Highway 150 in Mooresville, near East Mooresville Intermediate School.

The tractor-trailer owned by R+L Carriers was traveling eastbound on Highway 150 when the driver drove left of the center line to avoid hitting a stopped vehicle waiting to turn left, authorities said.

The tractor-trailer collided with a westbound Chevy truck at the intersection.

The collision spun the truck around and onto the side of Wiggins Road where it caught fire. The tractor-trailer ran off the side of the highway and into a field after the collision.

The occupants of the truck, driver Mark Anthony Eckles and passenger Brian Kevin Gray, both 47 and from Statesville, died at the scene.

The crash is still under investigation.

It's unclear if the driver of the tractor-trailer was hurt.

"It breaks my heart, especially before Easter when everybody spends time together," said Jenny Gudmestad, who lives near the crash site.

Residents said Mooresville is a town with several two-lane rural roads that worked well 10 years ago, but the community is growing fast.

"I have seen so many new houses and subdivisions being built that weren't here five years ago," Gudmestad said.

She said more of those roads are flooded with traffic and the intersections are hard to navigate.

Residents said that the roads would be safer if they were reconstructed to handle the growth in population.

Authorities had the road blocked for hours overnight while they investigated.

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