Six months ago, 95 drivers in Easter Sunday traffic crashed on southbound Interstate 77 near Fancy Gap, killing three people. The sloped stretch of I-77 hugging a mountainside between Hillsville and the North Carolina line has been the scene of eight similar crashes during the past 15 years. But the latest one involved the most vehicles and fatalities.
“Inside the Wreckage” — reporter Jeff Sturgeon’s in-depth story package kicking off Sunday — is a retelling of the crash through the eyes of four drivers who lost most visibility in the fog and collided with other vehicles or were hit. Police explain that no drivers were charged criminally or ticketed. Fortunately, state highway officials plan to install new technology by 2015 designed to help prevent another mega-crash.
What you’ll find in the two-day newspaper feature and special mobile-friendly online presentation:
- Accounts of four people involved in the wreck.
- A map of visibility in the fog zone along I-77 from the day of the crash.
- Obituaries of three people killed in the pileup.
- Dozens of photos, plus a slideshow of online-exclusive photos from the crash site.
- A place to comment, share your experiences and ask questions online.
The package is based on more than 369 photographs obtained from Virginia State Police, 24 crash reports obtained from the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, court papers, a visit to the crash scene and about a dozen interviews with motorists, police and transportation experts.