Two people were hospitalized after an SUV hit a pedestrian in front of Tillamook High School.
At 8:41 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 19, Tillamook Fire, Tillamook Region Medical Center Ambulance and Tillamook Police responded to a crash in front of Tillamook High School on 12th Street. It was concert night at the school and the performance was wrapping up, people were leaving.
According to Tillamook Police, a 16-year-old student was walking across 12th Street in the crosswalk, assisting his grandmother. They were crossing from the main school building toward the parking lot when he was hit by an eastbound Chevrolet SUV.
The impact caused the student to be pushed into his grandmother who also fell to the ground. The student and his grandmother reportedly suffered non-life-threatening moderate injuries and were taken to the emergency room by ambulance.
Police Chief Terry Wright said the District Attorney‘s office would decide whether the driver, identified only as a 17-year-old student with another student passenger, would face criminal charges. The investigation is ongoing.
Tillamook School District Superintendent Curt Shelley said safety is one of the highest priorities for the schools. He said there is constant work to upgrade the safety of 12th Street in particular in collaboration with Tillamook People’s Utility District (PUD), City of Tillamook and Tillamook Police. The PUD installed upgraded lighting this past month.
Shelley said the District is also investing in flashing lights at crosswalks and is scheduled to install fencing that would funnel pedestrians towards crosswalks. The District also continually works with School Resource Officer Nick Troxel around safety issues, including safe driving guidelines.
Shelley said the crash in the crosswalk was lit by several vehicles at the time. A westbound driver was stopped to allow pedestrians to cross, and another in the parking lot was also lighting the crosswalk. He said law enforcement did not attribute the crash to poor lighting.
The Crisis Response team assembled this morning, and the District is providing a ‘Care Room’ today at Tillamook High School and other schools to provide support for staff and students. The District is also in contact with the families involved to provide support.
Students were informed of the crash details the following morning during class time. The District said both victims were in good condition.
In another recent incident, two students were hit by a car near Tillamook High School Oct. 21.
A pair of 16-year-old students were hit by a 17-year-old student who was driving eastbound at 6:43 p.m. on 12th Street from Miller Avenue. All three were in the choir, heading to a concert in the auditorium.
The victims were taken by ambulance to the emergency room with non-life-threatening injuries. Life Flight was requested but unable to fly due to weather conditions. Wright said he was not considering any criminal charges for the driver in that crash, calling it an accident.