Recently in Newport Beach, a young pedestrian either walking or riding his bike was hit by a trash truck. According to KTLA 5, the incident happened at around 1:30 PM after the children had been let out of school for early dismissal. The accident happened close to the elementary school where the boy was a third grader. He was walking home at the time when the deadly pedestrian accident happened.
Pedestrian accidents often impact children. Kids and the elderly are both at greater risk of pedestrian accidents compared with other age groups. As summer break comes to an end and school begins once again, parents need to be aware of the risks of their kids becoming victims of pedestrian accidents.
Drivers also need to know there may be more kids walking to or from school, and more kids getting on and off school buses. It is up to drivers to account for the increased presence of kids on the road as they walk to and from school. If a driver fails to live up to basic safety obligations and a child is hurt as a result, the child or his family could pursue a claim for compensation.
Prevention of Pedestrian Accidents During Back to School Season
Kids who walk to and from school are at elevated risk of being hit by a car, but pedestrian accidents also happen when children ride the bus. Drivers need to make sure they obey all of the rules when it comes to stopping for a stopped school bus and refraining from passing a stopped school bus. As kids get off or on, drivers may not see them and could strike them if they disregard the bus's stop sign. Drivers can face a substantial fine and other serious consequences for not stopping for a school bus when required by law. Drivers also need to know that the back-to-school season means more kids walking not only in school zones and areas near schools, but also in residential neighborhoods near where the bus stops to pick up and drop off students.
Drivers can help to prevent pedestrian accidents during back to school season by:
- Avoiding distraction: It is easy to miss seeing a child walking in the path of your vehicle if you are looking at your phone, or anything other than the road.
- Obeying school zone speed limits: If you are in an active school zone, you need to make sure you slow down to the posted limit. Not only can you get a substantial ticket for speeding in a school zone, but you could also be endangering a young person.
- Watching for kids near schools: You should be extra careful when driving anywhere near a school during the hours immediately before and after school.
Parents should remind their kids how to be safe when walking to school, and drivers should make a commitment not to engage in dangerous behaviors that increase accident risks.