Student hit while boarding school bus

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By John Barnhart

    A letter went home, Monday, to parents of Goodview Elementary School students from the school’s principal, Eddie Zimmerman, informing them that a child from the school had been hit by a car while attempting to board a school bus that morning.

    “I would like to inform you of a very unfortunate incident that happened this morning before classes began” Zimmerman wrote. “One of our students was struck by a vehicle while attempting to cross the road to board a school bus at a designated area. Thankfully, this student is expected to recover from his injuries and we look forward to having him back very soon.”
    The 7-year-old boy was crossing Diamond Hill Road to board the school bus early Monday morning when he was hit by a car. The bus’s red flashers were on and its stop sign was extended, according to reports. The driver of the car has been charged with reckless driving for failing to stop.
    The child, who suffered a broken leg, was back home with his parents Monday night.
    “Your child’s safety is always our top priority,” Zimmerman wrote in his letter. “I’d like to take this opportunity to ask that you talk to your children about the importance of being vigilant when it comes to their surroundings as they travel to and from school. We can never educate enough when it comes to their safety.”
    Motorists disregarding a school bus’ flashing red lights is not unusual, school officials say.
    “That has always been a problem,” said Ryan Edwards, the school division’s public relations coordinator.
    Edwards said that he hears about it from school bus drivers.
    “That is always something they stress as one of their greatest frustrations,” he said.
    It’s not just a Bedford County problem. Edwards said that it’s also a problem elsewhere in the Commonwealth and the country.
    “Our bus drivers are trained to get license numbers and initiate contact with law enforcement through our transportation department,” he said. “We do everything to have those [motorists] located and prosecuted.”