MIDLAND, N.C. — Three family members, including a 12-year-old boy, died and four others were hurt in a multi-vehicle crash at about 8 a.m. on Highway 24/27 near Bethel School Road in Midland, according to the Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Office.
A van swerved into oncoming traffic, according to preliminary reports, the sheriff said.
“It’s unknown if the driver of the van was suffering from a medical emergency or what would have maybe caused that vehicle to swerve,” said Capt. Kevin Klinglesmith, Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Office. “We just don’t know yet.”
The sheriff’s office said five people were in the van on the way to their home in Norwood when the driver swerved into oncoming traffic, hitting two other vehicles.
The driver of the van survived and was flown to Atrium Health in Charlotte.
Three of his family members, including the boy, a man named Nicolae Gheorghe, and a woman, were all killed.
Another woman in the van and two other drivers were taken to Atrium Health in Cabarrus County.
Kenny Gillenwater has lived off Bethel School Road for more than 30 years and said there have been many wrecks on the stretch of the highway.
“There will be an accident, then there will be two more within a week or so behind it,” Gillenwater said.
Gillenwater said he mostly worries about how fast cars go down Highway 24/27.
He said police check for speeders all the time.
“Police, they are doing everything they can do but they can only stop so many cars,” he said.
So, Gillenwater said he doesn’t know what else can be done.
The boy who died went to Norwood Elementary School. There will be counselors on hand Thursday.
Highway 24/27 was closed down in both directions for hours at Bethel School Road. The road was reopened at about 3 p.m.
Plan to reduce crashes
The North Carolina Department of Transportation told Channel 9 on Friday that it has a plan in place to reduce crashes along Bethel School Road following another crash that sent two people to the hospital. It would include removing the left-hand turns from the road to the highway.
Instead, all drivers would have to turn right onto the highway. NCDOT plans to start accepting bids for the project next summer.
This is a developing story; check wsoctv.com for updates.
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