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AAA: Pitt County Most Dangerous for Collisions

By Mike Valerio, Reporter
Published On: Aug 16 2012 10:32:39 PM CDT
GREENVILLE -

Pitt County remains the area where North Carolina drivers have the "best chance for being in a collision," according to a sobering report released by AAA Carolinas.

The annual report concluded that rural counties "were the killing grounds for traffic deaths in North Carolina last year," as motor vehicle fatalities declines across the state.

Pitt has topped the AAA list of counties where collisions are most likely to occur for the past four years. Out of North Carolina's 100 counties, Pitt ranks third in collisions with injuries.

Greenville mother Gretchen Kendall still mourns the loss of her six-year-old daughter Ava, killed in an April 2011 accident on Highway 43. A distracted driver collided with a car taking Ava to a wedding, where she was going to be the flower girl.

"You don't want anybody to imagine what I've been through," Kendall said at an interview at her home Thursday. "This whole area has really grown within the past 10 years. And they really need to look at adjusting the speeds out here."

Kendall said her neighborhood where a rural and urban area meet needs safeguards for better driving.

"We need something just to let people know that they're coming out of 10 miles of rural roadway, farmland, and into a busier area."

The Kendall family has tried to get The North Carolina Department of Transportation to look at their area, but has not heard from a representative in months.

Kendall said when she's stronger, she'll fight for improved safety. For now, she needs to heal.

"It's a day to day kind of thing. But, it's just gonna forever be empty."