According to the Association for Psychological Science, getting hit by a car is the third leading cause of death for kids five to nine years old, and kids up to age 15 make up a disproportionate number of pedestrian casualties worldwide.
On Monday, March 25, Maria Fernandez Jimenez was crossing N.C. Highway 50 shortly after 6:30 a.m. to get on her bus. She was hit by a 2001 Pontiac Grand Prix.
There were six students on the bus at the time, and the victim’s older brother was just a few steps behind her.
According to WRAL News, witnesses say that the amber lights were flashing and the bus was coming to a stop when the accident happened. The red lights were not flashing and the “STOP” sign was not out.
Even so, hearing this news made me question the safety of school buses. It is obviously against the law to pass a stopped school bus, but some people do it anyway. I live ten minutes away from Garner High School, so it really worried me.
“I feel like people see public transportation, and its stops and signs are more of a hassle than a safety precaution. People need to take these things more seriously because the consequences of not doing so are clearly devastating,” said Sarah Noga, senior.
Neither speed nor alcohol were factors in the wreck. Authorities say they do not expect to file charges in the case.
The lesson to be learned in this devastating accident is to always be careful around buses, and never try to pass one before it is completely stopped.