Parents in Abbotsford are upset that no school crossing guard posted at the busy intersection where a nine-year-old girl was hit and killed in a crosswalk by a transit bus.
The girl was on her way to school on her way to school on Friday morning and was hit while crossing five lanes of South Fraser Way at Hill-Tout Street. The young girl was on her way to school at Ten Broeck Elementary, a kindergarten to Grade 5 school on Abbotsford’s west side.
The young girl was taken to hospital with critical injuries, but died shortly after arrival.
“A sad day,” said Rebecca Hernandez, who has two children enrolled at Ten Broeck Elementary. “We need to rally together and get the district to provide crossing guards every single day.”
School crossing guards in the Abbotsford School District are provided by Abbotsford Community Services, a volunteer agency. But in recent weeks, there has often been nobody at the intersection, an inconsistency that had many parents concerned, even before the death, about letting their children walk to school unaccompanied.
“We are currently working with Abbotsford Community Services to understand the circumstances,” school district spokesperson Kayla Stuckart told the Abbotsford News.
Emerson Hernandez said that he sees a crossing guard at the intersection “sometimes but not all the time.” He and wife Rebecca said that they had been discussing whether or not to let their son walk to the school when he starts Grade 3 next year.
“I don’t think that’s gonna be happening anymore,” he said,
The driver of the transit bus remained on scene and is cooperating with investigators.
In a statement, B.C. Transit president Manuel Achadinha said he is “extremely saddened” about the fatal incident.
“Our hearts and thoughts are with her family and friends. Our thoughts are also with the driver and the other witnesses of the event including passengers on the bus,” he said.
“B.C. Transit takes safety very seriously, and is cooperating fully with the Abbotsford Police Department, B.C. Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement, and other partners to investigate what occurred. ”
He said B.C. Transit will also conduct an internal investigation to determine if there are any additional measures that can be taken to prevent this type of incident from happening in the future.