pedestrian crossing sign

Safe Driving in School Zones

Student at KIPP Austin dies 10 days after being struck by vehicle

Police report that 8th grader Daniel Franco Tovar succumbed to injuries suffered when he was hit on the morning of February 28 in the 700 block of E. Slaughter Lane.

The driver of the vehicle that struck Tovar stopped and ran to a gas station to call 911. Austin Police say that the student was with his family when he was hit.

KIPP Austin Beacon Prep wrote a letter home to staff, students and family saying:

Dear Team and Family,
It is with great sadness that I am informing you of the death of a KIPP Austin Beacon Prep 8th grade student, Daniel Franco Tovar. Daniel passed away this morning from injuries suffered after being hit by a car on Wednesday, Feb. 28 as he was on his way to school. Our thoughts go out to Daniel’s family and loved ones.

Daniel has been a beloved part of the KIPP Austin Team and Family for four years, since he started as a Beacon Blazer 5th grader. School staff and students remember him as a fun-loving member of the KIPP Austin Beacon Prep community who loved to play soccer, read, and valued friendship and his friends. Daniel’s resiliency, playful nature and presence will be missed by all that knew him.

Professional counselors will be available for students and staff at our South Campus throughout the day Thursday and Friday to provide support to all who request it. If you or your child would like to meet with a social worker either day, please come to South Campus or call your front office to let them know.

We know that many in our Team and Family will want to offer your support in this difficult time, so we have started a GoFundMe campaign to help offer financial support to Daniel’s family. You can voluntarily donate here and all donations will go directly to the Tovar family. We will pass along other opportunities to support as the family informs us of their needs.
We will communicate memorial details once we have them. Please check the KIPP Austin Beacon Prep Facebook page for the update (
Thank you for your support during this difficult time.
The school has started a GoFundMe page for Daniel’s family.

Bowie Students Call for Drivers to Slow Down After Student Hit

Wednesday night a Bowie High School student was struck near the school at 5:41 p.m. The collision occurred at 4103 West Slaughter Lane.

The student was transported to St David’s South Austin Medical Center with critical injuries. The driver of the vehicle remained on the scene and is cooperating with authorities.

Now, Bowie students are calling on drivers to slow down in front of the school. On that stretch of the road drivers can reach speeds of up to 45 miles per hour legally. Even with signs for drivers to watch out for pedestrians, the legal maximum speed is well above what experts consider safe for pedestrians (generally considered 30 mph or less.)

This is the third report of a student hit walking to or from school in Austin in less than a month. A third 10-year-old boy (who is expected to be OK) was hit at around 7 a.m. across from the Montopolis Recreation Center in east Austin. Police asked for help identifying the driver.

A different 10-year-old boy was struck in a hit and run while walking home from school. According to reports, Caden Walsh was walking on the sidewalk of Hymeadow Drive when he was struck by a dark-colored SUV.

“Then they took off. … They didn’t know if he was dead or alive, and they just left him there,” said Caden’s mom, Heather Brady said.

Caden Walsh drug his crawled and hobbled his way home until someone stopped to provide assistance. Caden had to get 10 stitches in his leg.

The SUV reportedly swerved into the sidewalk. No curb separated Caden from traffic, just a strip of grass.

Three students struck traveling to and from school – two of them hit and runs. What do you think could be to blame for this string of child related accidents?

Distracted driving may be one factor causing erratic driving behavior. Read more about how you can talk to family and friends about the dangers of distracted driving.

Westlake student rushed to hospital with injuries

March 8, 2017
A Westlake High School student was struck by a car on Westbank Drive Wednesday morning. The student was sent to a local hospital with injuries.

Authorities say he is expected to make full recovery and that the injuries are non life threatening.

The crash occurred at 8:31 a.m. Follow KXAN for more information on this crash as the story develops.

School Zone Patrols Save Lives

Each year at the start of the school year Austin Police Department steps up patrols to make sure drivers adjust to new school zone speed limits. Safety signs and extra officers will be stationed around Austin schools to keep students and other pedestrians safe.

The signs remind drivers that all cell phone use in a school zone is strictly prohibited, and texting and driving in a school zone can result in a $500 fine. Speeding in a school zone or disregarding a crossing guard will also result in a hefty citation. Lastly, drivers are urged to not pass school ses that are stopped, as children may be crossing in front of them.

From January to May in 2012, Austin police issued over 4,500 tickets to drivers violating school zone laws. About a year ago, the APD began and completed an initiative to target school zone traffic violations in order to make areas around schools safer for pedestrians. As always, stay alert, focused, and safe while driving, especially in a school zone. For more information about pedestrian accidents, contact the McMinn Law Firm today.