100-Year-Old Preston Carter apparently put his car in reverse and struck 11 victims, nine of them children Thursday. Four students were listed as in critical condition when they arrived at the hospital but will likely survive according to local fire officials. The victims were apparently standing on a sidewalk outside a Los Angeles elementary school when the accident occurred.
Students have been struck by vehicles in similar situations at schools around the country. I recently conducted a forensic evaluation as an expert witness on a case where a student at a private school was struck by a car that was accidently put in reverse by the grandmother of a student at the school. The victim’s leg was cut off at the hip when she was pinned to a cement column by the car.
The potential for these types of tragic accidents should be considered by school officials. Qualified consulting firms that specialize in traffic engineering can conduct paid assessments for schools and school districts. Traffic officers from local and state law enforcement agencies can sometimes be a valuable free resource in helping school officials who want to re-visit the risk of these types of accidents.