School buses are a common sight on streets all across America, and are universally subject to strict laws and safety guidelines. This is hardly surprising. Parents everywhere entrust their children’s safety to these buses and their operators. We’ve previously covered school bus safety best practices on this blog, but a recent incident in our community has brought this issue back into the news. Malloy Law Offices is here with the full story on this Clinton school bus accident.
On the afternoon of Wednesday, February 8th, a Prince George’s County school bus carrying children home from classes was involved in a collision with a motorcycle on Clinton, MD’s Brandywine Road. The crash apparently occurred when the motorcyclist lost control of his vehicle and fell off his bike. According to an eyewitness, the motorcyclist and his vehicle both slid under the school bus shortly before the front of the bus burst into flames. The motorcyclist tragically passed away, but quick thinking from the bus driver prevented further injury or loss of life. The students were evacuated before the bus ignited and were reunited with their parents. No students were hospitalized as a result of the crash. Firefighters arrived on the scene to extinguish the blaze in short order.
Drivers should exercise increased caution around school buses and school bus stops. Keep a safe distance and watch for flashing yellow lights, signaling an imminent stop. Responsible drivers should also take pains to familiarize themselves with state and municipal laws concerning school buses. Both Maryland and Virginia require drivers to come to a complete stop while a school bus is showing flashing red lights and an extended stop sign and remain stopped until all persons are clear and the bus has begun to move again.
If you find yourself stuck behind a school bus picking up or dropping off passengers, we also advise an increased awareness of pedestrians in your vicinity. Unaccompanied children boarding or disembarking the bus may move into traffic erratically. Children walking or riding bikes may also be difficult to spot, especially in areas with narrow or nonexistent sidewalks.
The safety of the youngest and most vulnerable members of our community should be a priority for everyone. Malloy Law Offices is no exception to this rule. But we’re also advocates for motorcyclists and their right to use the roads safely and responsibly. This small but growing demographic of motorists is disproportionately represented in severe and fatal crash statistics. This is due in part to bikers’ lack of protection from outside forces in comparison to a car or truck but is also due to the conduct of other motorists. Many motorcycle accidents occur at highway exits, lane changes, and busy intersections. Oftentimes motorists either don’t see a motorcycle’s smaller profile until it’s far too late or simply don’t respect their right of way.
It is of the utmost importance that any and all motorcyclists purchase the appropriate safety equipment and make use of it whenever they ride. This includes:
The recent Clinton school bus accident was a tragedy that could have been far worse. We here at Malloy Law wholeheartedly commend the driver for their quick thinking and commend the school bus operators of Prince George’s county for training their staff to respond to emergencies appropriately. We also offer our sincere condolences to the family of the motorcyclist during this difficult time. If you or a loved one has been injured in an automotive accident caused by another’s negligence; Malloy Law is here for you. Whether you drive a car, ride a bike, take a bus, or simply walk, our experienced and diverse legal team is ready to fight for your rights and seek the maximum possible compensation on your behalf. Contact us today to get started.