Update: 3 truckers victims of weekend’s powerful winter storm

UPDATE: Another trucker became the third victim of the winter storm that inundated much of several southern states over the weekend. Two others trucker deaths were reported earlier.

Yadkin County Emergency Services reports a trucker who had been trying to shovel out his truck on Interstate 77 near Jonesville, North Carolina Sunday night complained of chest pains and died at a hospital later that day. The man has yet to be identified.   

Also, part of Interstate 40 in western North Carolina was shut down today because a tractor-trailer hauling pigs overturned in the westbound lanes near their Tennessee state line. The unidentified driver was seriously injured, according to media reports. Some pigs died in the crash and some escaped the truck and had to be rounded up.

Our original story:

An Alabama truck driver was one of the victims of the weekend’s massive winter storm that dropped some 2 feet of snow over parts of Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, North Carolina, West Virginia, Virginia, and Maryland.

Police say William James Taylor, 58, of Robertsdale, Alabama had left his truck when it became disabled on northbound I-81 near Exit 66 in Kingsport, Tennessee. He is reported to have left his truck and was walking on the shoulder when an SUV skidded out of control and struck him. The incident occurred at about 1:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 9.

Police continue to search for the driver of a truck that crashed through a guardrail on the U.S. 70/258 bypass near Kinston, North Carolina early Sunday. The truck was recovered from the Neuse River, but divers continue to search for the driver.

Workers recover a tractor-trailer that plunged into the Neuse River in North Carolina. (NCDOT photo)Workers recover a tractor-trailer that plunged into the Neuse River in North Carolina. (NCDOT photo)

Gov. Roy Cooper told CNN, “This storm dropped staggering amounts of snow, ice, and rain across our state. A year’s worth of snowfall or more fell on some places in a little more than a day.” The North Carolina State Highway Patrol responded to some 672 crashes, and the National Guard was mobilized to help.

Some 280,000 people were still without power as of this morning in parts of North Carolina, Virginia, South Carolina and Tennessee.

Virginia State Police today reported 1,177 crashes occurred since Sunday morning and asked residents to stay off the roads.

In the wake of the storm, temperatures are forecast to drop into the teens and 20s tonight and Tuesday night then into the 20s to lower 30s Wednesday night. Motorists are warned to be on the alert for black ice as the snow melts and refreezes.

Rain is forecast for the region late in the week.