SUMTER, SC (WIS) - The South Carolina Highway Patrol is trying to determine why a City of Sumter pickup truck veered off the road and slammed into a house, injuring a small boy and his father.
Ayden Burleson, 2, suffered cuts and other significant injuries and had to be airlifted to Columbia's Palmetto Health Richland Hospital.
A family member says Ayden's father, 33-year-old Jacob Burleson was also hurt but was released after treatment from Palmetto Health Tuomey in Sumter. The incident happened around 10:30 Monday.
A neighbor says the victims were in the home's family room when the truck drove off McCray's Mill Road near the intersection with Perry Boulevard. The truck broke through a chain link fence and traveled in a straight line to the rear of the house, penetrating the structure before coming to rest at the front of the home.
Next door neighbor Judy McLeod says she heard a boom and when she came out of her house, she saw the truck's driver crying and upset.
"He was afraid he'd killed somebody," McLeod said.
She says there was a second man in the truck and both appeared in shock. McLeod says her brother went into the wreckage to pull the child out. McLeod and other family members say accidents are not uncommon around the long sweeping curve near Sumter High School.
"They need to take a second look at how that curve was built," said Susan McLeod, who has lived in the neighborhood for 50 years.
Two hours after the truck was removed from the accident scene, city workers arrived to clean up the wreckage and try to secure the house, which had gaping holes on both front and back sides.
The City of Sumter released a statement Monday evening, saying:
The Highway Patrol continues to investigate.