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Traffic Changes Promised After Bus Hits Norwood Teen

Lucas Soliman, 13, sustained minor injuries after being struck by a school bus Friday.
Lucas Soliman, 13, sustained minor injuries after being struck by a school bus Friday. Photo Credit: William Soliman (inset)/Google Maps

An additional crossing guard will likely be placed in Norwood after a student was struck by a bus, township officials said.

Lucas Soliman, 13, was attempting to cross South Avenue at Clinton Street after school last Friday when he was struck by a school bus for the town's Valley Program, his father, William Soliman, told Daily Voice.

The driver of one bus -- belonging to the Rinaldi Bus Company in Closter -- waved him across, but another bus heading in the same direction failed to stop, according to Soliman.

Lucas ran into the moving bus headed toward Livingston Street that knocked him down and struck his leg

, according to a police report.

The seventh-grader's right foot was swollen and bruised and he had scrapes from his waist up to his chin.

"It's a terrible feeling when you hear your son was hit by a bus," Soliman said. "Your heart drops....Now the town is in talks to see what we can do to protect children in that area."

If there had been another crossing guard in the area, the Solimans believe, the incident could have been avoided.

In response, Mayor James Barsa said he plans on adding an additional guard by the fall.

"We have a good track record already but public safety is our number one concern," Barsa said. "There are several crossing guards all over, but this was middle of the block.

"It's an area right now that doesn’t have a lot of traffic exiting, but we could put another [guard] just to make it even safer."

Rinaldi Office Manager Linda Martinez and Norwood Schools Supt. Lisa Gross both declined comment.

Barsa said Lucas was in good spirits when he and Councilman Paul Haberman visited him at home after school Monday. The teen's parents are concerned that complications could present themselves in the coming weeks.

"The doctor said if the other driver was going faster, it could have been a more serious injury," Soliman said. "We feel like this should not have happened."

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