Student Killed in Illinois School Bus Crash
School buses are built tough and are generally very safe. Accidents are rare, especially ones that result in fatality. In fact, they account for just 0.4% of fatal motor vehicle accidents in the United States. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), roughly 134 people die in school-related motor vehicle crashes each year. This is an amazing statistic, considering that on an annual basis, 480,000 school buses cover approximately 10 billion miles in the United States.
When fatal school bus crashes do occur, they draw a lot of attention because children are often involves and the results can be devastating. This was the case when a school bus and SUV collided at an Illinois intersection. The driver of the SUV died in the accident. Tragically, so did a 5-year-old boy on the school bus.
The fatal crash occurred on the afternoon of September 26 in Sullivan, in Moultrie County. A Ford Edge proceeded into an intersection on southbound Illinois 32. It then collided into the path of the Sullivan School District bus. The bus hit the SUV on the driver’s side.
Both the driver of the SUV as well as a 5-year-old student on the bus died at the accident scene. There were 11 students on the bus at the time of the crash. Nobody else was injured.
The road was closed for several hours as police investigated and reconstructed the crash. A school bus and car collided at the same intersection in 2017.
School Bus Safety
While this accident can be shocking and devastating to parents, they should understand that despite this tragedy, school buses are still the safest vehicles on the road. Riding a school bus is 70 times safer than driving your child to school. Just 4-6 school students die on school buses each year.
But why exactly are school buses so much safer than passenger vehicles? For one, school buses are designed to be highly visible to other motorists. They are yellow/orange and come with many safety features, such as flashing red lights, stop sign arms and rollover protection. In addition, they have high crush standards and protective seating. In six states, seatbelts are required on school buses. However, Illinois is not one of them.
There are also laws that protect students who get on and off buses. Drivers legally cannot pass a school bus when it is picking up or dropping off children. Therefore, as a motorist, it is important that you understand the laws that apply in Illinois so you do not hit a child and possibly injure or kill them.
Contact a Chicago Bus Accident Today
While school buses are generally very safe and fatalities are rare, serious injuries deaths can still happen. It is especially devastating when the victim is a child.
If you or a loved one was involved in an accident, the Chicago bus accident lawyers at Harvey L. Walner & Associates, LTD can help you understand your rights and obtain compensation for damages. To schedule a free consultation today, call our office at 312-800-0000 or fill out the online request form.