Morning traffic accident reinforces need for Safety Patrol
When Berkeley County School Board Member Mac McQuillin and S.C. Senator Larry Grooms hit the streets Monday morning as volunteers on the newly formed Daniel Island Safety Patrol, they had no idea just how valuable their services would be.
The pair was tasked with helping Daniel Island School students and their family members safely cross the street at the intersection of Daniel Island Drive and Pierce Street during the busy morning arrival time. After McQuillin and Sen. Grooms assumed their positions, a traffic accident occurred when a construction van traveling south on Daniel Island Drive struck a car crossing the intersection on Pierce Street. Fortunately, there were no children in the crosswalk at the time, as they were being held back and waiting to cross by Sen. Grooms. No injuries were reported.
According to McQuillin, who was on his second Safety Patrol shift since the program started on April 18, the accident happened right in front of him.
“It just gives credibility to the Safety Patrol program,” added McQuillin. “And it shows this can be a dangerous intersection…Senator Grooms had children behind him who were waiting to cross. If not for him, they might have been involved.”
Marie Delcioppo, Safety Chair for the Daniel Island Neighborhood Association, was also on hand when the accident took place. Safety Patrol members are not there to direct traffic, she said, just assist those crossing the street. The van hit the rear passenger side of a car being driven by a local high school student on the way to school with her brother, pushing the vehicle out into the crosswalk, added Delcioppo.
“The teenagers had almost cleared the intersection when the truck clipped their car,” she said. “…The teenagers were the good drivers in this situation!”
As police and other personnel arrived to assist, Sen. Grooms and McQuillin continued to help children safely navigate the intersection.
“We were able to still help children to continue to cross the street,” said Delcioppo. “It just shows what value this program continues to add…We just helped things move a little smoother and reinforced the importance of the Safety Patrol. We are out there doing our best to keep kids out of harm’s way.”
Volunteers are still needed for the Daniel Island Safety Patrol. The pilot program at Daniel Island Drive and Pierce Street is expected to last through the end of the school year. If interested in serving, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.