Five-year-old Lakeland boy killed in ATV crash

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LAKELAND, Fl. (WFLA) – A five-year-old boy was killed and his father injured Saturday afternoon in an all-terrain vehicle crash in Polk County.

Eli Heard was transported to Lakeland Regional Health Medical Center where he was pronounced deceased. Joshua C. Heard, 32, was taken to LRHMC and has a broken arm and several broken ribs, according to his grandmother who spoke to WFLA Sunday morning.

According to a Polk County Sheriff’s Office report father and son were riding a Polaris ATV in the 3700 block of West Socrum Loop Rd. when a front tire support arm broke.

The vehicle overturned several times and both Eli and Josh were ejected.

Investigators say the boy was sitting in front of his dad on the ATV wearing a ‘soft helmet.’ Joshua was not wearing a helmet. The incident occurred just after noon.

The report states the ‘soft helmet’ is not designed for use on motorized vehicles.

The investigation continues.

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