Suffolk man dies in wreck

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, August 1, 2007

GATESVILLE – A head-on crash between a passenger car and an 18-wheeler left one man dead near here Friday morning.

Steven Kristopher Gross, 22, of Suffolk, Va. was killed after the 2003 Mitsubishi car he was operating crossed the center line on US 158 east of Gatesville and struck head-on a 2003 Freightliner tractor-trailer operated by Perry Ronald Huffman, 55, of Salisbury, NC.

The accident occurred at 8:29 a.m. approximately five miles northeast of Gatesville.

According to North Carolina Highway Patrol First Sgt. Kenny Pitts of the Troop A, District II office in Ahoskie, Gross was killed on impact.

“For reasons unknown, Mr. Gross’ vehicle crossed the center line at which time he was meeting the tractor-trailer operated by Mr. Huffman,” First Sgt. Pitts said. “Mr. Gross was not wearing a seat belt.”

Gross’ vehicle was traveling east at the time of the crash. After impact, his vehicle came to rest on the opposite shoulder of the highway.

Huffman, driving for Corriher Trucking of China Grove, NC, was not injured. Following the impact, the 18-wheeler, which was not loaded, ran off the westbound shoulder of the road and came to rest in a field.

NCHP Trooper W.S. Skinner investigated the accident and filed no charges.

The fatal crash increased the number to 14 of those who have lost their lives on Roanoke-Chowan roadways thus far this year. Five of those fatalities have occurred in Gates County.

According to First Sgt. Pitts, there were 16 lives lost in local motor vehicle crashes at the same time last year.