Student in crosswalk hit by bus

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WEST VALLEY CITY — Injuries to a 15-year-old boy hit by a bus while walking to school Wednesday are significantly more serious than initially believed, police said.

The teen, identified by family members as Christian Burquez, was crossing at 2200 West and 3100 South in a crosswalk about 6:45 a.m. when he was hit by a Granite School District bus making a left turn, said West Valley Police Sgt. Chad Evans. The boy was crossing against the light, he said.

Police initially believed Christian had suffered only scrapes and bruises in the low-speed accident, but upon arriving at the hospital, it was discovered the boy had broken ribs, a fractured skull and was bleeding from his brain, Evans said

"Those buses are pretty sturdy," Evans said. "Speed, in our investigation, was not a factor. Just the size, weight and impact of the vehicle could easily do that type of damage."

There was only one student on the bus at the time of the accident. No one on the bus was injured.

Doremi Boggess, Christian's aunt, said her nephew was thrown several feet by the bus. Christian was in intensive care and family members were awaiting further testing Wednesday night, Boggess said.

Despite his serious injuries, Christian may be cited for jaywalking, Evans said. No charges are being considered for the bus driver.

Evans said students crossing against the light or jaywalking in the middle of a street have become major problems at some schools.

"I don't know if they're lazy and don't want to walk to the corner," Evans said. "They just jaywalk no matter where they're at, and we have big problems with a few different areas. It really is a problem that we deal with on a daily basis."

District officials are pleading for people to watch out for school buses and to use caution. They said buses already have safety measures in place so people will see them and identify them, but people need to pay attention.

"Our concern is still with the victim and his family and obviously we hope for a quick recovery," said Granite School District spokesperson Ben Horsley.

Contributing: Pat Reavy


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