Local school district making changes after 3 students hit in crosswalks

Dec 8, 2023, 7:11 PM | Updated: 7:18 pm

HEBER CITY — Christine Sara is thankful that her son is alive.

“It’s a complete shock to a parent to get a phone call like that,” she said.

Her son, 14-year-old Noah McArthur, was biking to school one morning when a driver failed to yield and hit him in the crosswalk.

“He had a broken pelvis, broken collarbone, and a fractured skull,” his mom said. “He was in a severe concussion for a good 24 hours.

Unfortunately, Noah’s story isn’t unique.

Noah in a hospital bed after being hit by a car. (Courtesy: Christine Sara)

He’s one of three Wasatch High School students in just the last few months who have been hit while trying to get to or from school. One of those students just came home a few days ago after being in the ICU for weeks.

“It was a tough fall for our school and community to have three of our own go through that,” said Wasatch High School Assistant Principal Ryan Bishop.

Bishop says the school district is running a student safety campaign focused on preventing these accidents from happening in the future.

“We’re just trying to make sure that we’re doing everything we can, whether they’re behind the wheel or walking, to look out for each other,” he said.

Bishop said they get the message out through school announcements and through the help of their student journalists. Their efforts also include installing a stoplight near the school – which will be up and running before the end of the year – as well as adding crossing guards.

Mike Morrison is out there daily during lunchtime, helping students cross the street.

“It’s just something I wanted to do,” he said. “I wanted to make sure the kids are safe.”

Crossing guards in place at Main Street in Heber. They are there during lunch hours from 11-1 every school day. (KSL TV’s Emma Benson)

Christine thinks that the real problem is growth.

“It’s not just about money and selling every lot that we possibly can sell,” she said. “It’s more about the safety of our community and the people in our community. And I feel like that needs to be taken into more consideration.”

Whatever the root cause, both Christine and Vice Principal Bishop say it’s important for parents to have conversations at home with their kids about being aware, like staying off their phones when walking or driving. Bishop said those messages are being echoed at school.

Parents like Christine hope these changes, as well as future changes, will put an end to these accidents.

“I don’t know exactly what the answer is, but I just hope it stops happening,” she said.

Christine and Noah with their family. (Courtesy: Christine Sara)

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Local school district making changes after 3 students hit in crosswalks