3-year-old dies in Chippewa County crash

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Chippewa County (WQOW) – A three-year-old was killed in a crash when a minivan collided with a dump truck just south of Cadott on Thursday afternoon.

According to Chippewa County Sheriff Jim Kowalczyk, the crash happened at the intersection of Highway 27 and Hwy MM in the town of Sigel just south of Cadott around 2:34 p.m.

The sheriff said the minivan was south on 27 when the driver tried to turn east onto Highway MM in front of the dump truck.

The dump truck hit the side of the minivan. Both vehicles went into the ditch.

The driver of the minivan was trapped in the vehicle and had to be pulled out. The driver was airlifted to an Eau Claire hospital with injuries. The sheriff said the driver was the three-year-old’s mom. She is expected to be OK.

The three-year-old in the minivan was pronounced dead at the scene.

Sheriff Jim Kowalczyk said he believes based on the weight of the child the child should have been in a car seat and was not. The sheriff said the child was buckled in with a seat belt.

Kowalczyk added while he always recommends wearing a seat belt, or being in a booster seat if not of age or weight. In this case, he said it is still not a guarantee the child would have survived.

“The stats are that seatbelts are going to help you, there’s no doubt about that,” Kowalczyk said. “Regardless, because of the impact, because of the size of the vehicles, the speed of the vehicles, whether this child would have been in a seat or a booster seat, it probably wouldn’t have made that much of a difference.”

The driver of the dump truck was not hurt.

The names are not being released at this time.

The sheriff said it is possible the mom could face charges, but that has not been determined.

Clint Berge

Clint Berge

Clint Berge is the Social Media & Digital Content Manager for Eau Claire's Own WQOW News 18. Report any website issues to him at cberge@wqow.com

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