Student hit by vehicle, taken to Springfield
BOY SUFFERS ‘LIFE-THREATENING INJURIES’
Posted: October 18, 2012 at 4:16 p.m.
Updated: October 18, 2012 at 3:39 a.m.
BENTONVILLE A Washington Junior High School boy suffered life-threatening injuries Thursday after being struck by a vehicle on East Central Avenue after school, according to Police Chief Jon Simpson.
It was the second student pedestrian injury in 14 days.
The seventh-grader was taken by ambulance to Northwest Medical Center-Bentonville and later airlifted to a trauma center in Springfield, Mo., according to Mary Ley, director of communication for the Bentonville School District. The boy is 12 years old, Simpson said. His name hasn’t been released.
The student was crossing the five-lane street at its intersection with Jay Court when he was hit by a white Nissan Armada, according to Simpson. The driver’s-side mirror of the Armada was broken and the front quarter panel was dented.
Carolyn Haag, a witness, said the impact with the Armada may have thrown the boy against a Bentonville school bus. Michael Poore, school superintendent, said the bus was stopped in a turning lane going west. He said the child may not have hit the bus. “It doesn’t look like the bus was involved other than the child landed near it,” Poore said.
Haag, who was walking on Jay Court, said she tried to give the boy first aid.
“I saw a woman pull up and jump out of the car screaming,” Haag said of the Armada’s driver.
The incident happened at 3:50 p.m., just 15 minutes after school dismissed at 3:35 p.m. The school bus remained on the scene until about 4:30 p.m. Police spoke briefly with the 18 to 20 students on the bus before they left on a second bus.
Washington is a block north of East Central Avenue and a block east of Jay Court. There’s no crosswalk at Jay Court or at the street connecting Central Avenue to the junior high, Northeast Wildcat Way.
At A Glance
Streets And Highways
The student struck by a vehicle on Thursday afternoon and Megan Davis, who was hit by a school bus Oct. 4, were both attempting to cross five-lane city streets that are also state highways. East Central Avenue is also Arkansas 72, while Southeast 14th Street is also Arkansas 102.
Source: Staff Report
Haag said she lives in the neighborhood and sees children walking to and from school every day.
“I feel like there should be a crosswalk,” she said. “It’s busy with children walking up and down through here.”
The closest crosswalks from Jay Court are 825 feet west to J Street or 1,700 feet east to Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway, based on Google Earth measurements.
Poore said the district tries to have crosswalks near schools where there’s heavy pedestrian traffic. He said the district’s control is limited as students get farther from campus. The district conducts crosswalk safety education with younger students, but doesn’t do it much as students age.
“We probably should,” he said.
The incident comes two weeks after 17-year-old Megan Davis was struck by a school bus as she crossed Southeast 14th Street after school Oct. 4. Davis is at Mercy Hospital in Springfield and remains in serious condition.
“Every kid is so important to us,” Poore said. “I’d like to call out to every stakeholder — kids, parents, community members who drive our streets — we have a lot of young people out there. We have got to be alert as drivers and be aware that we may have to respond to a situation.”
The district will provide counselors for students at Washington today, Poore said.