Oversized floor mat partially to blame for crash that killed 10-year-old NC boy

Clyde Gates III and the pickup he was riding in (Steve Ohnesorge/WBTV & Family photo)

LENOIR, N.C. (WBTV) – A 10-year-old boy was killed after investigators say the vehicle he was riding in crashed and the young child was ejected. An oversized floor mat may be partially to blame.

The crash happened Sunday evening along Abington Road between Lenoir and Collettsville. Investigators say a woman lost control of her vehicle and hit an embankment. The vehicle flipped about three times, troopers said.

Her son, Clyde Gates III, was ejected from the vehicle and killed.

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Clyde’s sibling and three other children were also in the vehicle and the driver told WBTV none of them were wearing seat belts. They were all injured in the crash, but are expected to be OK.

According to investigators, the vehicle had aftermarket floor mats, which didn’t fit the vehicle properly. When the vehicle went around the corner, the floor mat shifted and covered the gas pedal, pushing it down.

The group was reportedly headed to the creek in an effort to cool off.

Investigators are working to determine if the driver was speeding before the floor mat shifted, but say alcohol was not a factor in the crash.

Copyright 2017 WBTV. All rights reserved.

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