A 13-year-old Woodlawn High School student was struck by a Ford Focus while walking near the school Monday morning at about 7:15, the Baltimore Sun reports, based on reports from the Baltimore County Police Department.
The victim was identified as Trayvon Shallomar Gore-Cromer; he was air-lifted to the University of Maryland’s Shock Trauma, where he was listed in serious condition Monday afternoon, according to a Shock Trauma spokeswoman.
Our prayers are with Trayvon for a good recovery from his injuries.
An article last week in the Champaign-Urbana News-Gazette reminded drivers to use extra caution when driving through school zones.
“Know when you’re entering school zones, even if you’re in your own neighborhood,” one child advocate and crossing guard told the News-Gazette.. “Keep an eye on (the school zone and kids inside). Don’t be talking on the phone, don’t be texting or whatever else you happen to be doing. Pay attention to your driving because things do happen, and you need to be ready to react.”
The Champaign Police Department offered general advice for motorists on school days. Note that their advice reflects Illinois laws specifically, but although some numbers may differ elsewhere, the advice is worth repeating:
• Slow down in marked school zones between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m. on school days when students are attending. The speed limit in school zones is 20 miles per hour, and you must yield to anyone, regardless of age, in a crosswalk. A school-zone speeding ticket may result in a $150 fine and a mandatory court appearance.
• Pay attention: “Any person that causes bodily or great bodily harm to a child or a school crossing guard in a school crossing zone is subject to facing imprisonment and fines of up to $25,000,” according to a release from the police department.
• Stop while students get on and off school buses. Yellow flashing lights will indicate a school bus is getting ready to stop. Red flashing lights and an extended stop arm tells you the bus is stopped and kids are getting off or on. You must stop and wait until the red light stops flashing and the folding arm withdraws before you can continue.
• Stop at crosswalks. Crossing guards are there to guide students, not drivers. “It is a driver’s responsibility to stop to allow pedestrians to cross in a crosswalk,” said the Champaign police news release. “Please stop well before the crosswalk and stay stopped until the crosswalk is no longer occupied, not just until your lane is clear. You may not turn left or right through an occupied crosswalk.”
• It’s against the law to use your cellphone in school or work zones, and it’s always against the law to read or send a text message while you’re driving.