The news of the deaths of young children jolted the nation, though it is difficult to know if that jolt of awareness will last or if it will be soon forgotten. Illinois news outlets reported the jarring news of the tragic deaths of five schoolkids and serious injuries to others in a series of distracted driving crashes across the nation.
The crashes stretched from Indiana to Florida and from Mississippi to Pennsylvania, drawing attention to the dangers distracted drivers pose to the youngest members of society.
The three-day burst of deadly pedestrian accidents began in rural Indiana, where twin 6-year-old brothers and their 9-year-old sister were all struck and killed by a pick-up driver. The children’s uncle said the little girl was holding her brothers’ hands as the truck hit them as they tried to cross a street to get to their school bus.
The bus had its warning-sign arm extended to alert drivers to stop, but the 24-year-old pick-up driver passed the bus and hit the kids.
The following morning, a 9-year-old Mississippi boy was struck and killed as he, too, tried to cross the street to climb aboard a school bus. A 22-year-old driver has been charged, police said.
In Florida, a 19-year-old driver struck and injured a kindergartner who was also walking across a street to board a school bus. According to a news report, the driver was too late in realizing that the bus had stopped and the warning arm extended.
The following day, a 7-year-old Pennsylvania boy was found dead by a school bus driver. The boy was left on the side of the road by an apparent hit-and-run driver, officials said.
Also that morning, five more children were struck by a car at a Florida school bus stop. Two adults were also hit, police said. One child was hospitalized with critical injuries.
Will the list of tragedies be enough to get drivers to pay more attention to traffic and pedestrians than they do to their phones? We just don’t know.
If you or a loved one has been harmed by a distracted driver, contact a Peoria law firm experienced in personal injury litigation.