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Windsor wreck hurts four

WINDSOR – Two local residents were transported to Vidant Medical Center in Greenville on Tuesday night following a three-vehicle crash that occurred on US 13-17 Bypass just south of Windsor.

Two others were also injured.

According to NC Highway Patrol Trooper H. Mizelle, sometime around 9 p.m. a disabled black SUV was spotted on the shoulder in the northbound lane of the highway in the rainy weather.  The sport-utility had apparently run out of fuel and was being re-fueled by two pedestrians who had been traveling in the vehicle prior to its stop.

Trooper Mizelle says a red Ford pick-up driven by 62-year-old William Hassell of Windsor, with passenger Jimmy Gilliam, 74, also of Windsor, slowed and pulled up, coming to a stop in the right-hand lane alongside the disabled vehicle to offer assistance.  They were told by the pedestrians that all was okay.

As that was happening, a black Chevy 2500, also traveling northbound and operated by 69-year old Elton Chappell of Merry Hill, came up around the bend in the road behind the red pick-up truck.

The trooper said as the pick-up truck began to pull off, it was struck in the left rear by the Chevy, causing it to strike the two pedestrians beside the disabled vehicle.  The red truck continued to travel to the right off the shoulder of the road where it came to rest after striking a tree.  Meanwhile, the Chevy also rolled off the road to the right and came to rest on the shoulder of the highway.

Bertie County EMS responded to the scene around 9:33 p.m. and transported Hassel, Gilliam, and the two pedestrians to nearby Vidant Bertie Hospital in Windsor.  Later that night, with Vidant EastCare air transport grounded due to inclement weather, the two injured pedestrians were moved by mobile ground transport to Vidant Medical Center.

The names of the two pedestrians – one of whom remains in critical condition at the Medical Center as of Wednesday afternoon – have not been released, pending notification of relatives and next-of-kin.