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Student Hit By Car Near Vail Ranch Middle School; Second Child Injured

Both students were transported to a nearby hospital via ground ambulance with minor injuries.

UPDATED at 11:35 p.m.: A student riding a bike near Vail Ranch Middle School Tuesday afternoon was hit by a vehicle, and a second a child was injured, it has been confirmed.

Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire Department spokeswoman Jody Hagemann said the call came in at 2:58 p.m. The young bicyclist was transported to a nearby hospital via ground ambulance with minor injuries, Hagemann said.

Another student at the scene was also hurt during the incident; Hagemann said the second victim suffered only minor injuries but was transported to a local hospital as well.

Vail Ranch Middle School is located at 33340 Camino Pietra Rojo in Temecula.

Temecula resident Erika Hessler was at the school today picking up her 6th grader and saw the bicyclist get hit. She called 9-1-1 and explained that a nearby UPS driver came to the child's aid.

"He put on his hazard lights, jumped out of his truck, and scooped the boy out of the street and onto the nearby sidewalk," Hessler said. "It was pretty amazing."

According to Hessler, the boy is a 6th grader at Vail Ranch Middle School.

Hessler said she never saw another child get hurt but explained, "I called 9-1-1 as soon as I saw the boy get hit.

"I just want to know that he is ok," she continued, adding that first responders were on scene within moments.

According to Corporal Angel Ramos of the Riverside County Sheriff's Department, the incident is under investigation; no arrests were reported Tuesday.

Ramos confirmed the students' injuries were "very, very minor."

Tuesday’s crash comes a week after some students in the Temecula Valley Unified School District took part in the "International Walk to School Day." Thousands of students across the county took part in the annual walk -- including children from Ysabel Barnett Elementary in Temecula – designed to promote youth exercise.

This story will be updated as information becomes available. If anyone out there can confirm that the student is ok, we would all like to know.

MCP October 10, 2012 at 03:08 AM
I live on the corner of this street and they seriously need to replace the stop signs with stop lights. I have seen many accidents on this corner and a lot of cars do not stop and just race on by, not slowing down at all. Very upsetting.
Brenda October 10, 2012 at 03:12 AM
Not just our City Jlrrs, its the PEOPLE of our town, community who need to see that THEY NEED TO SLOW down, drive safe, look for motorcycles, bikes, skaterboarders etc. and more. We have a ccommunity that gets around all sorts of ways, including on foot, wheelchairs. IF OUR OWN Community drivers cannot be mature enough to own up and drive safely then we have a huge problem and there is not enough police in Riverside County to stop all of them. Since Last Thursdays I have seen two rear enders now, on Margarita, and I might say that is the only two times I have been out. The odds of seeing two of them in two outtings is pretty damn bad. I hope these girls, boys are ok, and I Hope we know HOW they got hit.
jeremy October 10, 2012 at 03:25 AM
no offense but temecula traffic sucks big time....i was a cab driver in that area for like 6 months and with the amount of pissy drivers on the road, its tremendous, everyone is always in a hurry, its always me, me , MEEEEEEEEEEEEE,
jeremy October 10, 2012 at 03:28 AM
oh yeah i happened to be one of those drivers in a hurry so thats why i quit too much crap in temecula sorry... this probably has nothing to do with the kid on the bike, but hey just saying... and this is a rant, i'd be sitting my car for an hour just to get home, i bet half the people driving in temecula are half dead waiting in traffic probably didnt even see the kid.... and the cops can't do anything cuz they are stuck in traffic too.
jeremy October 10, 2012 at 03:45 AM
oh and if it isnt the traffic kids have to worry about when going home, its also school bullies, so remember that too, i remember when i was in vrms, there was a kid at a bus stop near where i lived who got killed (like around 1996?), struck by a car, when a couple of kid bullies pushed him into traffic so look out for punks like that too.
PD October 10, 2012 at 05:49 AM
How does this happen??? SLOW DOWN PEOPLE! I don't care what that kid might have been doing - Even if it turns out that he jumped out into traffic unexpectedly it WOULDNT MATTER because if the driver was anywhere near a school getting out he/she should have been driving slowly and alertly enough to avoid it!!! Use some common sense people! No matter the extent of the injuries, this is inexcusable and I hope the law comes down swiftly. A license should be revoked.
PD October 10, 2012 at 05:53 AM
Just curious what the stats are for pedestrians and cyclists getting hit by cars in Temecula / Murrieta, because it sure seems to be on the rise. Anybody know?
jeremy October 10, 2012 at 02:46 PM
everyone is prone to some kind of accident in his/her lifetime, this isn't news!
jeremy October 10, 2012 at 02:48 PM
sorry i didnt mean to shout
jeremy October 10, 2012 at 02:53 PM
I love you PD
Cononwind October 10, 2012 at 03:18 PM
I have seen so many drivers run the stop sign, driving too fast in the school zone. But I have also see the kids on bikes and the ones walking not looking before they cross, they just keep going not watching for cars. Too many close calls on that too. Really people need to pay attention, maybe remind the kids “look both ways before crossing”. I know I had to tell my teen kids that, and if they want to drive they need to focus, watch and pay attention to drivers and people walking or running. As I tell my kids expect the unexpected. I am glad the child is ok, I hate to see a child get hurt.
SuzAnne October 10, 2012 at 03:40 PM
We should have busing like the school in other states. We pay enough in taxes to the county to afford this service and its insane that kids so young walk to school or ride bikes.
Only my thought October 10, 2012 at 04:05 PM
^^^^If the kids are so young that are walking and riding bikes they should be with a parent. I have a 4th & 8th grader that I walk with.... Get it together parents!
pleep October 10, 2012 at 04:35 PM
Olivia, I think an 8th grader is more than old enough to walk to school and back. I grew up in Vail Ranch and walked to VRMS every day without any problems. My parents did though, teach me how to cross the street and to think proactively to help avoid anything happening in the first place.
Troy October 10, 2012 at 04:36 PM
Vail Ranch *does* have busses. They're not expensive ($31.50/month one way and $59/month round trip, less for low income). Usually, the district requires that you live a minimum distance from the school for the bus, but because Vail Ranch is near Highway 79, they will make an exception to prevent children from having to cross the highway. A big problem are the parked cars on Butterfield Stage which cause chaos. Cars making a right turn to get to the school have to hang out in the traffic lane because many of the cars are near the intersection. In addition, many parents drop their children off so they can enter through the gate facing Butterfield Stage, which would be fine if they could form a semi-orderly line and drop them off near the gate. Instead, children are dropped off all over the place and cars stop and pull out in random spots. I've seen parents pull up next to a parked car to let their children out and their children get their backpacks out of the trunk. Do they not realize that they are in traffic and could get rear-ended with their child between the cars? We told the front desk about this, and they told us they couldn't do anything. The parked cars are teachers and staff, so there is something they could do: park further down Butterfield Stage instead of right by the gate and Welton. The city should move the no parking zone to the west side, by the school. That way, the road will remain clear by the school because people will park on the other side.
Cononwind October 10, 2012 at 04:56 PM
If the city of Temecula needs money this is the way they should get it. Put police units on Butterfield hand out lots of tickets, I have seen so many kids at GOH j-walk and they get tickets.
PD October 10, 2012 at 04:59 PM
Kids should be able to walk / ride a bike to school safely. Thats all there is to it. We have a responsibility as parents and members of this community to ensure that this happens. Not just YOUR kid, but ALL kids. Please watch out for them.
Lynn October 10, 2012 at 05:16 PM
I get to the school 30 minutes before the bell rings in the afternoon just to park by the gate that you are talking about so that my child can come out the gate and get directly into the car. It is such a cluster in that housing tract in the afternoon that I don't even. Want to deal with the rude the bikes, kids and rude drivers. The teachers should park on campus and leave BF Stage Rd for parent pick up.
Pkmd October 10, 2012 at 05:21 PM
I have kids that ride bikes and play after school like any other normal kid. I have taught my children how to cross streets and walk on side walks... not in the middle of the street like I see way to often with kids. I also explain to my kids (not relating this to this story) that if your going to do something dumb, then you better be tuff to take the reaction. I see kids up at another middle school who ride straight out into traffic after school and even one time a kid laid down in the street in front of an ambulance. He (the driver) got on the P.A and told the kid in front of his peers just how stupid his behavior was. I LOVE IT!!! So, I guess it's best to say kids will be kids and sometimes kids do things that get them hurt. For this person who was hit, thank God she is o.k. Someone was watching over her and for that we should all be grateful.
Patrick Wilson Jr. October 10, 2012 at 05:54 PM
I understand that people are in a hurry to get someplace more often than not, but when driving in a school zone, I NEVER drive more than 25mph. Most of the time I drive 17 or 18 because I understand my car has shoddy brakes. There is no logical reason as to why this child should have been struck with a car; it's clearly the blame of the driver who hit him. I hope the two children involved recover quickly and return to school in a timely manner.
Becca J October 10, 2012 at 06:08 PM
I witnessed this accident...first of all, the kid ran into the side of the car, the car did not hit the kid. Second of all, the kid was not wearing a helmet so thankfully he was not more injured! He had a scrape on his leg and that was it. The kid never stopped before entering the crosswalk and ran into a car that was going about 5 mph because of how much traffic there was. The second kid literally ran out into the middle of the street to see what happened and was "tapped" by another car. All of this is very unfortunate and thankfully no one was seriously injured. All the drivers in the area were being very cautious since kids were just everywhere! There should be a crossing guard or more school supervision at that intersection .
Only my thought October 10, 2012 at 06:26 PM
@Pleep its not my son that I feel is not capable of walking to school its the crazy drivers I feel are not capable of driving around my child or any other child. We almost been hit to many times to count
KMom October 10, 2012 at 07:10 PM
I agree with the other posters. The Butterfield Rd really needs to be addressed. Is there any other location the staff/teachers can park? Can the police come and evaluate the school or was that done last year like many others? I’m here twice a day to drop/pick up my child. It’s gotten much worse this year. So, we leave extra early. My child goes to the library before school. Drop off is clearly a danger to the school children. Parents are now stopping on Butterfield and letting their children cross traffic to enter the gate. The speed limit is clearly posted at 25mph. But, when you follow it people behind you get on your bumper and then zoom around you clearly upset. Then they stop in front of you and let the child out on Butterfield! It happens daily! For those of us who chose to wait to pull over to the curb, we sit and wait for the ones who feel like they are ‘special’ and drop the child right in the middle of the road! Pick up is even worse! I saw a boy almost hit recently in front of the school and he jumped into a pickup truck behind me. I would have made my child get out and use the cross walk. Being late to practice after school is OK! Teach your child to follow the rules! Running across lanes of traffic is dangerous! I’d rather have my child late then planning his/her funeral.
5150 October 10, 2012 at 07:19 PM
It's a Mad House over there, it's like a bee hive that just got poked with a stick, unfortunately there is no real solution, to many people in a small area
Lynn October 10, 2012 at 07:35 PM
Becca ,OH MY GOODNESS - this morning, I was driving putt putt slow and as I entered the unsupervised crosswalk on Camino Piedra two little boys nearly walked out right in front of my car!! I had already entered the crosswalk when they came up on the cross walk and decided to cross. I can see how the kid on the bicycle probably did the same thing. They were both looking down and talking - never once looked up and if I wasn't such a Granny Driver and didn't stop....well good grief! As adults, we all have to anticipate that any kid will do anything at any time.....
Maggie Avants (Editor) October 10, 2012 at 09:52 PM
Vail Ranch Middle School Principal Kevin Groepper addresses safety protocols near the school in a letter today: http://patch.com/A-y5Fz
Zak October 10, 2012 at 09:59 PM
We have had requests from VRMS to start a bike train. A walking school bus would also relieve some of the vehicle traffic. I know this school pulls from a fairly large area, but there are opportunities for people to bike and walk to school. We just need to make it safer. If less people drove it would be safer. Here is what we are doing at two TVUSD schools. http://www.facebook.com/BikeTrain
J kottke October 11, 2012 at 01:09 AM
Don't drive with your dog in your lap. Don't text and drink coffee at the same time.
Gail October 11, 2012 at 02:52 PM
Out of 53 cities with a population of 100,001-250,000 people, Temecula ranked 53rd out of 53 cities for pedestrian injuries/fatalities among children under 15 years of age; 17/53 for bicyclists under 15 years of age in 2010. Office of Traffic Safety, http://www.ots.ca.gov/Media_and_Research/Rankings/default.asp#vertical Gail
just saying :/ November 15, 2012 at 04:05 AM
im an eighth grader at vail, and though i didnt see the accident first hand, i was on campus at the time. i just wanted to say that it's the PARENTS job to be responsible for the childrens safety, even if the child is in the wrong. god, no one just runs straight into a truck haha. the truck was obviously at least partially at fault...

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