Girl, 12 dies in wreck
A 12-year-old Climax girl was killed Tuesday night after the SUV she was riding in hit a telephone pole.
Leah Elizabeth Way was traveling in the back seat of the 1999 GMC Yukon driven by her mother, Martha Way. According to N.C. State Highway Patrol Trooper Greg Ingram, Way was traveling west on Richland Church Road and failed to stop at the intersection of Old U.S. 421.
Ingram said the vehicle continued traveling through the intersection and collided with a utility pole, causing the vehicle to overturn.
Ingram reports that Leah and two other passengers were in the backseat of the vehicle, but Leah was not wearing a seat belt. The other two passengers were wearing seat belts and were both uninjured.
“Leah was seated in the middle, and when the vehicle hit the utility pole and overturned, she was ejected,” Ingram said.
The investigation is ongoing and no charges have been filed at this time, according to Ingram. He feels that the tragic incident could have been easily avoided had Leah been in a seat belt.
“If you have family members or anybody that you’re driving and are responsible for, you have to make sure that they are in a seat belt,” Ingram said.
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