The Coroner’s Office has released the name of a 16-year-old who was killed in a Dorchester County crash with a dump truck on December 28. He is Matthew Eric Thornton, a resident of Ruffin.
The crash occurred at 8:42 a.m. on Highway 17 Alternate close to Clubhouse Road.
Lance Cpl. Tyler Tidwell said the teenager was heading south in a 1995 Ford Thunderbird when he crossed the center line and hit a dump truck that was going north. The truck overturned but the driver did not suffer any injuries.
No details have been provided about what caused Thornton to leave his lane. It is not clear whether he died on the spot or if he passed away in a hospital.
His body was scheduled to undergo an autopsy, as the South Carolina Highway Patrol and the Dorchester County Coroner’s Office are continuing their investigations.
Thornton had been a Firefighter Explorer for two and a half years. Colleton County Fire-Rescue Chief Barry McRoy described him as promising and dedicated. He said he was close to the end of the Firefighter II Training program.
Funeral arrangements are pending.
As of December 30, 2020, there were 901 fatal crashes recorded in South Carolina compared to 923 at the same point in 2019. These crashes resulted in the deaths of 1,003 people – two more than in the previous year.
Single-vehicle crashes occur for a variety of reasons including speeding, mechanical failure, and hazardous road conditions. The driver is not always at fault.
If you lost a loved one in an accident, you may be entitled to compensation. A South Carolina car accident attorney can assist you in building a case.