Police have identified one of the drivers in a two-car crash that killed five people.
Police say Walter Edward Skinner was traveling northbound in the southbound lanes of I-85. It is still unknown if alcohol was a factor.
The deadly crash happened in Brunswick County, closing Interstate 85 for several hours - right at the start of the morning rush.
The call came in just before six Tuesday morning. Officers shut down I-85 after police say Skinner, the driver of a red pick-up, headed north on a southbound lane, immediately striking a car. That crash killed Skinner and all four inside the car.
"You would think if a person is going down the wrong direction that jeopardizes everybody's lives, don't you think?" said Larry Faulcon who had to be re-routed.
Faulcon drives trucks for a living and uses I-85 every day.
"You couldn't use the interstate. Everybody was on US 1. That was crowded…congested real bad. There ain't but two lanes here and you can imagine you've got all the interstate traffic right here, that wasn't good," he said.
Many frustrated drivers stopped at Alberta Food Barn as police investigated down the road.
"When I came in, I noticed there were a few customers in the parking lot more than normal…We were pretty busy. Most people were coming in to use the bathroom. I guess they were held up for a while on the interstate," manager Christina Williams said.
A Tuesday morning commute interrupted by unexpected tragedy.
"If I got on a highway and meeting traffic, I would pull over and figure out what's going on. Then turn around and get with traffic…I feel sorry for those people and the person that caused all this stuff…People just don't think," said Joe Baker who lives near the scene.
The section of I-85 closed for five hours. While that stretch of highway is open now, so is the investigation to determine how and why this happened.
Investigators are still trying to identify the other victims and contact their loved ones.
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