In November, five separate accidents involving school bus stops and distracted drivers resulted in the deaths of five children and injuries to six more. The tragedies, which occurred in Florida, Indiana, Mississippi, and Pennsylvania have prompted law enforcement officials nationwide to highlight the “huge problem” of distracted driving.
Three Children in One Family
Three of the fatalities affected one family in Rochester, Indiana; a nine-year-old girl and her six-year-old twin brothers were killed when they were struck by a pickup as they crossed the street to board their bus. Another child was airlifted to a local hospital. The driver of the pickup truck is facing charges for three counts of reckless homicide. A Boston personal injury lawyer can help you determine how to proceed if you’ve been injured by the negligence of another.
Just a day after the horrific tragedy in Indiana, a nine-year-old boy was struck and killed in a similar incident in Baldwyn, Mississippi, and a five-year-old Tallahassee, Florida boy was seriously injured while walking in front of a school bus.
Young Boy Killed in Hit-and-Run
Later that month, a seven-year-old Pennsylvania boy was struck and killed at his bus stop. And the driver who hit him didn’t stick around. The boy’s body was found by the driver of his school bus, the victim of a hit-and-run. Sadly, it wasn’t the morning’s only accident involving children waiting for their school bus; a distracted driver in Tampa struck and injured two adults and five children who were waiting for their bus. According to Steve Hegarty of the Tampa Police Department, only two of the children were seriously injured. To date, no charges have been filed in the Tampa case.
“This is a huge problem we’ve been experiencing all around Mississippi,” said Captain John Poulos, of the Mississippi Highway Patrol. “Distracted driving plays a huge role with stopped school buses.”
In fact, Mississippi passed “Nathan’s Law” in 2011 to deal with the problem of drivers who illegally pass stopped school busses, but the issue remains. The new law increased fines and sentencing for offenders of school bus traffic laws. It is because of Nathan’s Law that the Mississippi driver who killed the nine-year-old boy is being charged with aggravated assault.
Since the advent of smartphones, navigation systems and other forms of mobile technology, the number of accidents involving distracted drivers has skyrocketed. In 2015 alone, 391,000 people were injured and 3,450 were killed by distracted drivers. And the problem isn’t expected to go away any time soon.
“Distracted driving is an issue anywhere where people have cellphones, so everywhere,” said Hegarty. A MA personal injury lawyer can help you recover damages if you’ve been injured due to the negligence of another.
Distracted Driving Kills
There are strict traffic laws surrounding school busses because these vehicles are carrying the most precious cargo on earth—our children. Distracted driving is always a bad idea, but doing it in the presence of a school bus, and thus small children, is downright reckless.
Altman & Altman, LLP—Premier Personal Injury Law Firm Serving All of MA
If you have been injured by another’s negligence, the skilled legal team at Altman & Altman, LLP can help. We have been protecting the rights of accident and injury victims for more than 50 years. Our experienced attorneys have an impressive track record of winning cases and obtaining compensation for our clients. When the reckless or negligent behavior of another causes harm to you or someone you love, you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other associated costs. Don’t go through this difficult time alone, we can help. Contact Altman & Altman, LLP today for a free and confidential consultation about your case.