Central High East student hit by a car walking to school

FRESNO, Calif.

The girl, a Central High East student, was struck by a car Thursday morning while walking to the bus stop near her home just before 6:30 a.m. on Brawley and Weldon.

Police are still trying to piece together what happened. They said incident happened just before sunrise and witnesses say the road was dark which may have contributed to the crash.

The Central High East student attempted to cross Brawley Avenue to get to a bus stop near her house. Neighbor Jeffrey Holland said he was riding his bike home from a nearby shopping center when the girl was struck near the center-divide.

"I was coming around the corner from the recycling base, heard a boom -- and the paramedics were there quick," said Jeffrey Holland, "The windshield was blown in the car, roof was smashed back, the doors were popped open, it looked really bad."

The student has not been identified. She was carried away in a stretcher and taken to Community Hospital with what appeared to be injuries to her legs.

Holland said the street was dark and the driver may not have seen the girl crossing the road. He said thieves recently stripped the street lights of copper wire and several of the bulbs were out at the time of the accident.

Action News: "Do you think it's a safety concern?

Holland: "Oh yeah. No doubt. They have been out three times. They rewire them, then they're out again."

While Fresno Police work to determine who was at fault and whether the lack of lighting contributed to the crash, Sgt. Richard Tucker wants to remind pedestrians to take precautions to keep themselves safe.

"Walking in the roadway is not a place to walk, we're asking pedestrians to cross at the intersection, to push the button and wait for it to say walk. And of course the cross walk isn't always a safe zone. We're asking you always look both ways before you cross the road," said Sgt. Tucker.

In this case the girl survived, but Tucker said there were 10 pedestrian related fatalities in the city last year and Fresno is on pace to exceed that number this year. He said officers with the traffic division will continue monthly operations focusing on pedestrians to drive that number down.

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