A Tragedy That Could Have Been Avoided

Categories: Pedestrian Accidents

A 17-year-old Douglas County girl was killed this past Tuesday night when she stepped off the school bus. If the driver who hit her had been aware of young girl crossing the street, a tragedy could have been avoided.

It was a rainy night, and Brandy Hart was returning from a school function, when the bus stopped on Cedar Mountain Road near Dorris Road in Douglasville. The bus driver activated the flashing red lights that warn motorists to yield the right of way to children getting off the bus. Brandy got off the bus and was crossing the road when a car driven by Shirley Barker McManners hit Brandy.

McManners was charged with first-degree vehicular homicide, reckless driving, and failing to stop for a school bus that had activated its red lights and stop arm. She is being held without bond in the Douglas County jail. She made her first court appearance Thursday.

According to the CDC, car, truck and other vehicular accidents are the leading cause of injuries to children and for all people ages 5 – 34.

Georgia law states that when a school bus stops to discharge passengers, all traffic in both directions must stop. That is true for all roadways, except four-lane divided highways with medians. [Official Code of Georgia Annotated § 40-6-163]

Despite the fact that this happened on a rainy night, the bus driver had activated flashing red lights, alerting other drivers to the child crossing the street. No matter what time of day it is, it’s important to pay attention to those lights when a school bus is stopped.

At Krause Golomb & Witcher, our attorneys are skilled and knowledgeable about pedestrian accidents and school bus accidents. If you or your child has been injured in any kind of accident involving a school bus, call us today for a free consultation.