Coroner: Fire, Not Car Crash, Killed Driver

12:01 PM, Mar 28, 2013   |    comments
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Richland County, SC (WLTX) - The Richland County Coroner  has identified a man who died in a car crash early Wednesday morning.

Gary Watts says 38-year-old Samuel L. Burgess Jr died while driving along Rice Meadow Way in Northeast Richland County.

Officers say between 12:30 a.m. and 3 a.m., Burgess lost control of his vehicle, ran off the road, and struck a tree.

Investigators believe the car may have gotten stuck in sand. For whatever reason, Burgess wasn't able to get out of the car, and eventually, the vehicle caught fire and was engulfed in flames.

The coroner confirms the man died from smoke inhalation and burns from the fire.

The incident remains under investigation by the Richland County Coroners Office and Richland County Sherriff's Department.

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