CLEVELAND COUNTY, N.C. -- A deadly head-on crash in Cleveland County has claimed the lives of three young men.
Highway Patrol says just after 10 p.m. Monday, a car with three people inside was traveling in the northbound lane of NC 180 (South Post Road) in Patterson Springs when the driver veered to the right, then swerved to the left into oncoming traffic and slammed into a Nissan sedan.
Highway Patrol says the victims include driver, Toby Reinhardt, 19, Jacob Wright, 18 and Antonio “Bart” Brown, 27. None of them were wearing seatbelts.
“Please, please, please tell your young kids to wear their seatbelt because you have no idea how hard it is to lose a child,” said Kristen Reinhardt, Toby’s stepmom, who described him as a loving boy.
Wright's family told NBC Charlotte that he had recently graduated from Crest High School and was going to go to school for welding.
The two people in the Nissan were transported to Carolinas Healthcare Cleveland County. Highway Patrol says they were both wearing their seatbelts, but their conditions are not known.
According to Sgt. Johnson, it was not foggy nor smoky at the time of the crash. He says the cause remains under investigation.
So far this year, there have been 22 fatalities in 16 collisions in Cleveland County. In all of 2015, there were 10 fatalities in 10 collisions.