Two people are dead after a single-vehicle crash set their car on fire and trapped them inside, according to authorities. North Carolina Highway Patrol responded to the serious car accident in mid-morning on July 11. A third passenger survived the incident, they say.
According to reports, the vehicle driven by a 62-year-old man was traveling north on US 13 when the driver inexplicably veered across into the oncoming lane. The vehicle left the road on the far left side, entering a ditch before striking a utility pole and a tree. The final impact caused the car to catch on fire.
The local fire department responded to the scene along with medical personnel and police, but they were too late to save the driver and one of the two passengers, a 41-year-old woman who was in the back seat at the time of the crash. A second passenger, a 46-year-old man, received treatment at the scene of the accident and was then airlifted to a local hospital. Police have not commented on what factors may have contributed to the accident, including alcohol and unsafe speed. The investigation is ongoing.
There is too little known about this tragedy to speak with authority on where the culpability will lie. Since the car accident killed the driver, it is possible the true reason may never be known. However, North Carolina law specifies that barring external factors a driver is responsible for his or her conduct on the road, which means it may be possible for the deceased passenger's next-of-kin and the surviving injured party to file a wrongful death and a personal injury suit, respectively, against the estate of the driver.
Source: The Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, "Ahoskie duo killed in fiery crash," Gene Motley, July 14, 2013