Woman says I-77 construction debris blew tire

A driver says construction debris punctured her tire in the I-77 construction zone. She asking FOX 46 to get results after the construction company denied her claim.

"This is not a household screw."

It's a piece of metal, two and a half inches long.

"It went right in there."

Chyresse Lopez says she picked it up in the I-77 construction area during rush hour last September.

"I was only going 15 miles per hour."

She says a light on her dash immediately turned on.

"I just kept hearing a 'thump, thump, thump.'"

Having no doubt where the screw came from, Chyresse filed a claim through NCDOT.

"After about three months, I didn't hear back so I contacted NCDOT again and they told me that Sugar Creek Construction would be reaching out to me shortly.

Then I received a letter from Liberty Mutual on behalf of Sugar Creek Construction, saying that they're not legally responsible for this accident."

Her claim was turned down.

"It's not even about the money anymore. It's about blatant negligence."

NCDOT tells FOX 46 they need proof of negligence to take action. According to a spokesperson, it's nearly impossible to prove whether or not that screw came from the construction site even if that kind of screw is used in the project.

"I was only going to Ikea. I can only imagine people going to and from work, to and from picking up their children, kids in the car. It would be tragic."

For Chyresse, it's not about the flat tire. It's about holding Sugar Creek Construction accountable.

"Please, Liberty Mutual, NCDOT, shut them down," says Lopez.

Sugar Creek Construction and Cintra did not respond to our requests in regards to this story.

If you have a story to share with FOX 46 about the I-77 construction zone, email us at newstips46@foxtv.com.