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A mother and her two children were killed after their vehicle caught fire in an early morning crash near Holly Hill, according to the Orangeburg County Coroner’s Office.

Amber Stanley, 24, along with her 4-year-old son Jack and her 2-year-old daughter Autumn of Callahan, Florida all died of thermal injuries due to the vehicle fire.

The accident occurred at 12:49 a.m. as Staley’s 2011 Kia Soul was traveling north on Interstate 95, according to S.C. Highway Patrol Lance Cpl. Judd Jones.

The vehicle hit an alligator and ran off the left side of the road into the median. It then struck a tree and caught fire.

The South Carolina Highway Patrol continues to investigate.

Ten people died on the state’s roads during the past week, according to preliminary numbers from the S.C. Department of Public Safety.

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As of May 6, 297 people have died on South Carolina highways this year, compared to 356 highway deaths during the same time period in 2017.

Of the 219 motor vehicle occupants who have died in 2018, 111 were not wearing seat belts.

So far this year, 41 pedestrians have died compared to 52 during the same period in 2017. Also, 29 motorcyclists have died compared to 37 in 2017 and five bicyclists have died compared to seven the year before.

In Orangeburg County, 11 people have died so far this year in crashes investigated by the S.C. Highway Patrol. Last year, there were 13 deaths through May 6.

No people have died so far this year on the state’s highways in Bamberg County. Two people died during the same period last year.

One person died in Calhoun County through May 6, the same number as last year.

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