Looking at school bus stop safety after crash; No arrests yet in PSL hit and run

Police say they have car; looking for clues

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. - A Port St. Lucie High School student remains in critical condition Tuesday after she was hit Monday walking to her school bus stop.

25-thousand kids take the bus to school every day in St. Lucie County and they walk to 7-thousand different bus stops.

So what happened on Lucero Drive is not a common occurrence.

Still, one injury is one too many for the district.

Steve Lopez drives his two girls to school every day, though one could take the bus.

"A lot of irresponsible people out there.  Can't trust anybody on the streets," said Lopez.

Monday's hit and run crash around the corner from Lopez's home reinforced his decision.

"I'm always concerned.  I'm a parent.  Can't let them walk by themselves in the street."

Marty Sanders is the head of facilities management for St. Lucie County schools.

It's his job to help assign bus stops.

"We plan early on for transportation every year. It's a challenge and you want to do everything you can to improve the conditions for students," said Sanders.

He says the district isn't unique dealing with a lack of infrastructure.  The challenges the district faces not only change from neighborhood to neighborhood but also from block to block.  For example, on the street where the crash happened, there are sidewalks but as you drive west, the sidewalks disappear.

Sanders says bus stops are chosen based on area traffic volume and whether there is adequate walk room.  That's three feet of flat space on either side of the pavement.

"If the roadway has a deep ditch and there isn't adequate walk room we declare that a hazard," added Sanders.

Sanders says Monday's crash is tragic and it would be great if sidewalks were everywhere.  He says the county as well as the cities of Port St. Lucie and Fort Pierce have added in sidewalk construction ordinances with certain new projects.

"It's no question the direction where we're going.  We just have to see how we can continue and do the best of what we have from the past."

Sanders say they will conduct a review of the route 18 year-old Diana Gill was walking when she was struck Monday morning.  Gil is still listed in critical condition.


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