PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY, Md. (DC News Now) — Prince George’s County Police officials are investigating a Monday morning incident where two children were killed by a van as they walked to their elementary school.
Authorities said that 10-year-old Shalom Mbah and five-year-old Sky Sosa of Riverdale were hit around 8 a.m. at the corner of Riverdale and Taylor roads.
The Prince George’s County Police Department (PGPD) declined to release more details about the incident but plans to address the accident at a morning news conference on Tuesday.
But parents of children at the school said that they have had a problem with the lack of crossing guards near the school. They said the accident could have been prevented if a crossing guard was escorting the children across the busy intersection.
10-year-old Adam Brooks is a student at the school, in 5th grade.
“It hurts me very deeply that one of my very own classmates got killed in a car accident,” he said.
Brooks said he knew one of the victims of the crash from school.
”[I] wish that the two classmates have a safe passage to heaven,” he added.
Heather Clay, Brooks’ mother, said she was appalled that there are no crossing guards at that intersection.
“There’s been times when there have been close calls,” Clay said. “It’s really sad. A family lost their family member and that’s not OK. It could have been prevented.”
Hours after the crash, all that remained was the dark-colored van in the middle of the street with yellow tape in front of it across Riverdale Road and a lone backpack nearby on the ground.
Parents flooded the school to come pick up their children throughout the early afternoon. One of them was Joslin Evans, who came to get her son and was concerned about how this was going to impact him and others at the school.
“Death, accidents, everything is just hard for people to deal with, especially around the holidays,” Evans said. “We send our kids to school, we want them to be safe and this happened?”
Clay said that something needs to be done to address the crossing guard problem to save lives.
“It shouldn’t be that hard to get a crossing guard or somebody to stand in the street telling people where to go,” she said.