Children at risk of pedestrian accidents with school in session

With school starting, children will be walking to and from school or the bus, and can be at an increased risk of getting hit by a car.

The beginning of a new school year should be an exciting time for students in Georgia. They should not have to worry about being hit by a car while walking to school, but sadly, many children across the nation are seriously injured or killed in pedestrian accidents.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, pedestrian accidents are one of the few types of accidents that have increased in recent years. Nearly 5,000 pedestrians were killed in 2012 alone. Children are among those most at risk of being hit by a car, say the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This risk can increase during busy traffic rush hours, while children are walking to and from school or the school bus.

Augusta boy hit after getting off the school bus

It can be easy for drivers to miss children walking along the roadway or crossing the street. It's even more dangerous when negligent drivers fail to stop for buses picking up or dropping off children. This scenario was tragically highlighted last winter, when an 8-year-old boy was struck by a van while trying to cross the street after getting off his bus, reported WRDW News. According to witnesses, the 20-year-old driver of the van didn't slow down even as the bus had its safety signs out and the bus driver honked and waved to get his attention. Sadly, the boy was in critical condition and placed on life support.

Common ways for pedestrians to get hurt

Pedestrians often share the road with drivers, and there are a number of ways and places they can be hit by cars. These include:

  • Driveways, along sidewalks and in parking lots where cars are congested and frequently park and back up.
  • In neighborhoods and school zones where children play and cross the street.
  • In intersections, even during green lights and within crosswalks.

Poor weather, busy traffic and glaring light can also contribute to situations where pedestrians can be hit by a driver who does not see them.

Pedestrian accidents contributed to almost 12 percent of all traffic deaths in 2012, says Smart Growth America. Many communities across the country have taken steps to improve roadways and make them safer for people to walk. However, some areas remain dangerous. These include busy metropolitan streets and undeveloped rural roads where speed limits are high.

Contacting an attorney

It's impossible to predict when and where an accident will occur, and pedestrian accidents are usually devastating. If you or a loved one has been hurt by a negligent driver in a pedestrian accident, contact an experienced personal injury attorney right away.

Keywords: accident, injury, pedestrian