PENN HILLS (KDKA) — Police have not said whether an unidentified woman will be facing criminal charges after the car she was driving went out of control and struck a Penn Hills School District crossing guard Thursday afternoon.
The accident happened around 3 p.m. on Hulton Road, near the intersection of Saltsburg Road.READ MORE: Film Honoring Betty White Debuts In Theaters
An eyewitness told KDKA-TV News that the woman was “definitely speeding” when she hit the crossing guard who was standing near a utility pole at the time.
After hitting the guard, the car then slammed into a utility pole and caught on fire.
Deputy James Scholtz, of the Allegheny County Sheriff’s Department, was driving home from work when he spotted the accident.
“The car was on fire,” Scholtz said. “I checked on the lady driving. I got her out of the car, then I opened the rear door, and was able to get the child out.”
Terri Belohlavek, who operates a daycare center near the accident scene, said the crossing guard was new to the neighborhood this year.
She described Jim as “a jolly, nice guy, always talking about his wife, picking her up from work in the evening.”READ MORE: Mayor Gainey Vows To Have 'Streets Clear By Tonight'
He was taken to Forbes Hospital in cardiac arrest.
“He comes on a daily basis and he stands out there and gets all of our kids and makes sure he gets them off safely,” said Tammy Belohlabek, a witness. “I walked up to the building a little after 3 [p.m.]. One bus was already here, I went to check on them to see which buses I had to get next, gave him a little wave, walked in the building. Normally, I’d go over and talk to him, but today I decided to go into the building and see what buses weren’t in yet and as soon as I got into my entryway is when I heard it all hit.”
The Penn Hills School District says counselors will be available for students on Friday, if they feel it necessary to talk to someone about the accident.
At last report, the crossing guard was still in critical condition.
Neither the woman driver, nor her son was seriously hurt. They were also taken to Forbes Hospital to be checked out.
The Penn Hills School District has released this statement on the incident:
“The Penn Hills School District has been notified of a vehicular accident involving a Penn Hills school crossing guard. None of our students were involved in or witnessed the accident. Buses have been rerouted in the area of Saltsburg and Hulton Roads, and parents have been notified about possible delays in transportation. We have no additional details at this time. Counselors will be available for any students who may need them during the school day on Friday.”MORE NEWS: Live Winter Storm Tracker: Winter Storm Blankets Pittsburgh Region With Heavy Snowfall
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