A tragic Salem-area car accident this week involving critical injuries to a child offers a sobering lesson in the importance of car and pedestrian safety as the new school year gets into full swing.
According to television station KGW a 16-year old girl suffered life-threatening injuries in an Oregon car accident in the small town of Jefferson, Oregon, south of Salem. “The 16-year-old girl was ‘walking along the side of the road’… when she was hit, according to Tammy Robbins with the Jefferson Fire District,” KGW reports.
The station’s online article goes on to note, also citing Robbins, that “the car that struck her smashed into a power pole after hitting the girl, but the driver was not injured.”
From the perspective of a Portland car and pedestrian accident attorney who handles many cases involving injuries to Oregon children the incident in Jefferson stands as a reminder of the need for drivers to exercise extra caution now that school is back in session. Children and teens are often less cautious than they should be when walking or biking to and from school. As adults and parents, of course, it is incumbent on all of us to impress on kids the importance of safe conduct when they are in or near traffic.
But we all also know that children are impulsive and do not always do what they are told. This places an extra burden on adults to act in a careful and responsible manner at all times. Never assume that a child on a bike, or a teen walking beside the road, will do the logical or safe thing. Slow down, and give kids a wide berth whenever possible, remembering always that safety is everyone’s responsibility.