State troopers are investigating a three-vehicle crash on U.S. 15-501 that killed a high school student and a UNC-Chapel Hill professor early Monday morning.
The driver of a Chevrolet Tahoe, Yolanda Gonzalez-Saavedra of Chapel Hill, and the driver of a 2008 Toyota Camry, John Wade Collins, 44, of Pinehurst, were both pronounced dead at the scene.
Gonzalez-Saavedra, 18, was a student at Northwood High School, said Lt. Jeff Gordon, a spokesman with the N.C. State Highway Patrol. Collins was an Air Force lieutenant colonel who headed the Department of Aerospace Studies and the Air Force ROTC unit at UNC-Chapel Hill.
Emergency workers transported the driver of the third vehicle, Kelly Felicia Scurlock Cross, 45, of Sanford, to UNC-Chapel Hill, where she was treated for non life-threatening injuries, Gordon said.
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The accident happened about 8 a.m. on U.S. 15-501 northeast of Pittsboro.
State troopers say Gonzalez-Saavedra’s Tahoe was traveling south on U.S.15-501 near Ruth Lane when it veered into the median and began to overturn. The Tahoe crossed into the northbound lanes and crashed into Cross’s 2011 Camry. Cross swerved to the right to avoid a head-on collision and came to a stop after slamming against the shoulder’s guardrail.
Gonzalez-Saavedra’s Tahoe continued to roll over and landed on top of the Camry Collins was driving, Gordon said.
State troopers have not yet determined what caused the Tahoe to travel into the median, Gordon said.