A 17-year-old girl was killed Wednesday night when her car went off the road and struck a tree in Lorain County, according to Ohio State Highway Patrol.
Troopers said the victim, Danielle K. Eckert of Columbia Station, was driving eastbound on Capel Road in Grafton Township around 9:13 p.m. when her car went off the left side of the road.
According to authorities, Eckert was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash. She was transported to University Hospital Elyria Medical Center and later succumbed to her injuries.
The incident is currently under investigation but troopers said alcohol does appear to be a factor in the crash.
According to the superintendent of the Columbia Local School District, Eckert had been a part of the school system since kindergarten but recently went to the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow, or ECOT.
School counselors were at the high school Thursday to talk to students.
The school sent the following statement to News 5:
Columbia Local Schools is mourning the death of one of our own, Danielle Eckert. Danielle attended Columbia since kindergarten and recently withdrew to E.C.O.T. We send our thoughts and condolences to her family and friends. Danielle was a friend to so many at CHS and in our community and was loved by all. We will miss her smile and friendship. The Lorain County Schools Crisis Counseling Team, school counselors and administrators as well as local clergy were on hand at Columbia High School today to talk to our students. Our school family is still in shock and saddened by this tragic accident. Once a Raider…Always a Raider!!!!!