Henrico school bus driver charged after striking bicyclist

Henrico school bus driver charged after striking bicyclist

HENRICO, Va. (WWBT) - Henrico police responded to an accident involving a school bus and bicyclist.

Police received report of an accident around 6:48 a.m.

The accident occurred in the area of New Market Road and South Laburnum Avenue.

Police say the bus was stopped at the red light and attempted to turn on red when the female bicyclist went into the crosswalk.

“I just remember thinking, ‘I can’t believe this bus isn’t stopping right now,’” Olivia Laughter said.

She and her friend Matthew were riding their bikes Wednesday morning on the trails when the school bus driver hit her.

“She wasn’t stopping, so I was trying to move out away from the bus and the bus struck me. I guess the wheel got caught under and I came off the side of the bike," she recalled.

“The bike ended up right underneath the wheel. It just crushed it,” Matthew Roy said.

He just wants drivers to pay more attention, especially at areas where bike trails intersect with the road.

“They cross each other at those intersections and I don’t think drivers always remember that, especially when they’re making that right on red. They look for those cars coming from the left and they don’t even look right for pedestrians and bicyclists," he said.

He also thinks restricting turning right on red near bike trails would help too, even adding a reminder for drivers to yield.

“There’s no special signage or a bicycle light like you have in some places in (Washington) D.C.," Roy said.

“There are kids and families that ride, walk and run on that trail everyday," Laughter said.

No children were on the bus at the time of the accident.

The school bus driver was charged with reckless driving.

A Henrico Schools spokespersons says the standard policy when a school bus driver is charged with reckless driving is that they’re taken off duty after the system tests for drug or alcohol use.

Police have not given any indication that the driver was under the influence.

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