As school starts up again this fall in Knoxville, many children will walk to and from school or their bus stops. When drivers fail to pay attention or obey traffic laws in school zones, children may be put in great danger of being injured in a pedestrian accident. Sometimes, children may not fully understand how to safely walk near traffic and might take risks a driver is not prepared for. However, in many other cases, a negligent, speeding or distracted driver may disregard safety laws and harm a child.
Already, a Tennessee mother has expressed worry for children who cross the street at a bus stop in Memphis. The woman’s concern may reflect the feelings of countless parents across the state with children who walk to their schools or bus stops. Reportedly, the woman took a cell phone video of vehicles driving past buses that were stopped to let children off. She said that she almost saw a young girl get hit by a car that continued driving past the stopped bus.
Tennessee law requires all drivers to stop when a school bus has its stop sign extended to allow children to safely cross the street. This includes large, multi-lane roadways with a center turn lane instead of a barrier or median. It is important for drivers to be vigilant for buses that have stopped, and to watch for children crossing the street. Those who fail to obey school zone laws may cause tragic fatal accidents and might therefore be held liable for the wrongful death of a child, funeral expenses for the family and criminal charges.
Source: News Channel 3, “Mother concerned about cars passing stopped school buses,” Caitlin Alexander, Sept. 3, 2015