At the start of the new school year, many children’s lives will once again be on the line. A significant percentage of all auto-pedestrian accidents nationwide, including Colorado, involve children moving around school buses. Records indicate that children younger than nine years old are at the highest risk as they rush to get on or off the bus.
Under Colorado laws, drivers on roads without medians or other types of physical barriers must stop when they approach stopped school buses with their red light flashing. This applies to traffic going in both directions. Drivers must bring their vehicles to a complete stop at least 20 feet before they reach a stopped bus on either side of the road.
Safety authorities say children are at the highest risk in the 10-foot area around school buses. According to research, most of the accidents in which schoolchildren are struck around bus stops are caused by distractions. However, both drivers and children can be guilty of distractions, especially by cellphones. Drivers must keep in mind that young children could dart out from behind a bus in the blink of an eye, and for that reason, they must come to a complete stop. Striking a child, even at a low rate of speed, can have devastating consequences.
Parents of children who were injured in auto-pedestrian accidents in Colorado might have grounds to seek financial relief through the civil justice system of the state. The assistance of an experienced personal injury attorney can be invaluable in the process of establishing negligence and other legal proceedings. The successful navigation of a lawsuit can bring recovery of economic and noneconomic damages.