A collision between a passenger car and a tractor-trailer on the morning of Wednesday, May 30, 2012, was fatal for a 26-year-old woman and her daughter.
The accident occurred near Zeb Little Road on N.C. 150 in Catawba County, about one mile east of N.C. 16 and approximately four miles west of Lake Norman.
The North Carolina Highway Patrol was alerted to the incident around 8:00 a.m. and responded promptly to the scene. Tisa Michelle Strickland, a resident of Maiden, was traveling west on N.C. 150 and had been trying to pass one or more cars with her Pontiac Grand Prix. According to Trooper W.A. Martin, Strickland crossed the centerline of the highway before crashing head-on into the tractor-trailer heading east.
Strickland and her one-year-old daughter, Payton Michelle Dellinger, both died at the scene. The daughter was the only passenger in the car, and the Highway Patrol reports she was in a child safety seat.
Martin said alcohol and drugs are not suspected as factors in this fatal North Carolina truck crash.
The driver of the tractor-trailer tried to avoid the accident by swerving onto the right shoulder, but was unable to prevent a collision. He was taken to a nearby hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. Authorities have not released his name.
The tractor-trailer rig, which is owned by a Denver company, was carrying a 30,000-pound load of concrete barriers.
Investigators closed the highway for almost six hours after the crash. They report that there were over twenty feet of skid marks left by the truck, but there was no evidence that Strickland slowed her vehicle or maneuvered to avoid the collision.
Emergency responders were shaken at the accident scene. Reporters quoted Chief Justin Butler with Sherrills Ford-Terrell Fire and Rescue as saying, “Anytime we deal with something like this it is really tough for our guys. And always our thoughts are with the family and what they may be going through.”
The staff and attorneys of Speaks Law Firm extend our deepest condolences to the family and friends of the mother and daughter who lost their lives in this tragic incident.