LANCASTER – A 14-year-old boy crossing the street to his school bus stop was struck and killed by a car that tried to pass the school bus in Lancaster Friday morning, authorities said.
The fatal collision happened around 6:10 a.m. on Avenue J, just east of 140th Street East, according a California Highway Patrol report.
Gage Rossi was crossing Avenue J in a southerly direction when he was struck by a 2014 Kia Forte driven by 66-year-old Cecilio Lopez Navarro of Riverdale, according to a California Highway Patrol report.
Navarro was driving eastbound on Avenue J behind a school bus at approximately 50 to 55 miles per hour, when the school bus slowed down and pulled to the right shoulder on Avenue J, the CHP report states.
Navarro slowed down to about 35 mph to pass the school bus, and as he passed the school bus, Rossi crossed the street directly into the path of Navarro’s vehicle, according to the CHP report.
Rossi died at the scene, the CHP report states.
Authorities have not yet been determined if the stop sign and lights on the bus were activated at the time of the traffic collision.
“An inspection of the stop sign and lights was conducted at the scene and they appeared to be working properly,” the CHP report states.
This traffic collision is still under investigation, and alcohol is not suspected to be a factor, the CHP report states. Navarro was not arrested or cited in connection with the collision.
70 comments for "Lancaster boy hit, killed crossing street"
When I use to go to school the bus driver would activate the flashing stop sign, would get off hold a stop sign and crossed the child when it was safe. Are they doing that anymore?
I’m not trying to blaming anyone, I’m just saying it sure would be safer if an adult (bus driver) would help the child cross the street.
I’ve always felt that the flashing lights and stop signs on buses actually makes it more dangerous for everybody. I’ve almost been rear ended twice stopping for a bus. And kids obviously have a false sense of security because of this approach. This was an over reaction, and I suspect it hasn’t accomplished what it was supposed to.
Bus Driver says
When the yellow lights start flashing, children are waiting to be picked up at a designated school bus stop and the bus is going to stop to pick them up. The reds come on immediately on stopping. It is not okay to pass a bus in the process of stopping to pick children up. Instead of trying to HURRY UP AND PASS THE BUS before the stop THAT IS ALREADY HAPPENING, people need to stop.
Children should also already be waiting at the stop. Running across the street to get to the bus is against the rules because it is not safe.
I hope people take this horrible tragedy and learn from it.
I’m a school bus driver you are suppose to activate ambers 200 feet before stop which means they can still pass red lights and stop sign cannot be activated till the bus is stopped
Why didn’t the boy look before crossing I am a school bus driver they need to see if the lights and stop sign where activated before placing blame and why didn’t the kid look instead of just walking out into the street there is alot to investigate but I must admit everyday people disregard the lights and stop sign
When I use to go to school the bus driver would activate the flashing stop sign, would get off hold a stop sign and crossed the child when it was safe. Are they doing that anymore?
Bottom line! It’s a school zone! When school is active an there’s kids present! TGE LAW STATES YOU MUST FO 25MPH! PERIOD!!! it’s sad to see a young boy loose it’s life like this! NOW THE QUESTION IS! DID THE BUS DRIVER HAVE ITS STOP SIGN AN FLASING LITES? WERE THE KIDS DROPPED OF IN AN APPROPIATE DESIDNATED DROP OFF SPACE? WAS THERE A CROSS WALK PERSON? REGARDLESS THIS DRIVER BROKE TGE LAW BY SPEEDING BUT IM SURE A LAWYER IS GOING TO ASK ALL OF THESE QUESTIONS!
It is not a school zone rural area only 25 in school zone the boy was going to school and if he is in high school the bus driver does not have to get off the bus and walk the student the law through chp is only k thru 8 do to have to walk get your laws straight I’m a school bus driver here in Palmdale wasn’t speeding not a school zone unfortunately if the student walked out in front of car without looking it is not the drivers fault I see kids all day running out in front of cars to get there school bus high school kids
Jerry Rank says
Marilyn – You need to do some updating on your training. It is the driver’s responsibility to ensure it is safe for secondary students (grade 9-12) to cross when red lights are activated, just as it is a drivers responsibility to ensure traffic is stopped before escorting elementary students across the street. There needs to be verbal communication between the driver and the student before they are allowed to cross. Because they are not elementary aged students does not relieve the driver of their duty to ensure their safety. I have been a driving instructor for the past 32 years and I would encourage you to discuss this with your training department.
Driver should be arrested, She KILLED a boy! Is she that horrible of a driver that she cannot look straight ahead and when she sees a boy, SLAM ON THE BRAKES! SWERVE! 35mph. Yeah, right. More likely 50mph.
Absolutely! How were they not cited or arrested!?! That is the question! Absolutely ridiculous! So, apparently now it’s okay to kill children with your car, because nothing will happen if you do… SMDH… complete [removed].
When a school bus is stopped and there lights are on that isnt because they are there to make you late it means children are present and that needs to be obeyed if people would pay attention. or if the DMV stop giving non speaking english people a license just saying
What does speaking English have to do with it? Maybe they can still read and understand English but may not necessarily speak it. You were making a good point until your ignorance showed through.
This has nothing to do with race idiot!!!! unfortunately people make mistakes the may be white,black,brown…etc….its stupid the things you put….this is the schools fault. i pass thru there every single day and i always say in my head that a light should be put in the middle because student always are crossing…..but until something this tragic happens thats when everybody want to do something about it. AND AS FOR YOU BEING A RACES LOOK AT WARE YOU LIVE!!!! just don’t talk like that in front of ppl because you could bark at the wrong tree!!!!
Let’s just all pray for everyone involved in this tragedy it’s just to heartbreaking. Also please don’t give your donations to anyone pull up at Gages house and give it to his mother or give it to the school for Gages family please because there are a lot of snakes around town.
Michael Rives says
I am very sorry for the mother and father of the young man and their loss. I have prayed for the young man. I pray, too, that the various school districts in the A.V. will start an information campaign, coordinated by the CHP and LASD, to alert students and their parents to bus safety rules, as well as, rules for dropping off and picking up students. Sunnydale elementary near my house has crossing guards, but, sometimes it is like a free for all with parents and students crossing in the middle of the street. Like I said, let’s use this terrible loss to prevent future ones.
C Bronson says
Thoughts and prayers are with the family.
This brings to light a huge problem in our area – the lack of (or non-existent) traffic patrols in the AV area. Every day we all see the total disregard for traffic laws. Speeding, running red lights, ignoring stop signs, etc. The speed limits in our area MUST be reduced as well. Sorry for using this tragedy to post this, but something needs to be done.
There’s no words that can comfort Gage’s family. I hope they can take some comfort in knowing our thoughts and prayers are with them.
The motorcycle police need to be at the school bus stop locations. I pick up my son there and cars still don’t stop when the lights are flashing or stop sign is up. Pisses me off cause kids can be crossing and these people sometimes don’t stop.
Bob Oberst says
I still remember a classmate being hit as he was crossing the street going home from school, that was over 50 years ago. The CHP shortly there after put on a presentation of why we need to look both ways when crossing a street. The reaction time to apply the brakes when traveling at the normal speed of a city street, then the stopping distance was measured to imprint on us to be careful.
I see a school bus slowing down and I do the same, they stop and I stop. I do not need a yellow warning or red light to tell me that children are present. Even when that bus is on the opposite side of the street. That yellow bus is a big enough sign to tell me to be responsible with the vehicle I am driving and that the possibility of a child being a little distracted is enough to cause me to STOP. As a adult who accepts his responsibilities I accept my due diligence when operating a vehicle which lies solely within the fact that when I get behind the wheel I assume all responsibility unless it is proven otherwise beyond my control.
Pro Driver says
If you stop every time a school bus stops, then you should NOT be driving.
I agree that it is wise to be extra vigilant when a school bus is near, even more so when they are stopping to load or unload children. You should slow down for safety purposes, but not stop unless the lights are red or you see a child (or any other person) crossing your path.
Would you stop at an intersection with a green light because a child is waiting to cross? No, you wouldn’t, but you would slow down a bit in the event that child crossed against the light in order to avoid hitting him/her.
Making up your own rules as you go along makes the roads unsafe for you and other drivers.
John Doe says
Just to play devil’s advocate a little bit because there are so many people ready to hang the driver, let me add a few things to think about.
1) The article states that it was unknown if the stop sign was extended and the lights were turned on. You are allowed to pass if they are not on. I’ve passed many buses without their lights on because they were either not fully stopped or just waiting there for some reason. Until that is known, please stop blaming anyone.
2) It was 6:10 in morning and both vehicles were heading eastbound. This time of year, that’s about the time of day where it is difficult to see in that direction due to the sun just breaking over the horizon. Seeing a person crossing the street would be very difficult.
3) Did the vehicle have it’s headlights on? It doesn’t state it in the article, but it probably did due to the time of day.
Feels sorry for everyone involved.
Helen Keller says
Let’s address #2. If the sun is shining in your eyes, you are not responsible for hitting someone? Maybe drivers should slow down if the sun is shining in their eyes.
Why is everyone in this valley in such a big hurry all the time? A big hurry to go to work???? School buses mean kids are in the area. Slow the f down.
John Doe says
Actually, a school bus by itself doesn’t necessarily mean kids are in the area. I’ve seen plenty of empty school buses driving and parked on the side of the road.
All I’m saying with #2 is that it would be difficult to see someone walking across a street. Just because the school bus is there doesn’t mean the driver is required to slow down and stop. The bus needed to have their lights on for that requirement. If the bus had it then sure, I’ll blame the driver. Until that evidence is available, I’ll keep an open mind.
Stop trying to blame the driver without all the evidence.
Mike Scott says
Did I not see the time it was pitch black and why should he have too cross period bus should pick him up where he is dropped off in afternoon on the sAfe side of street
I have been affiliated with the School Bus Industry for over 35 Years. And I drove also. SBD biggest Problem is the Bus Stop…..When they approach the Stop…..They are to Turn On their Flashing Amber Lights.(to Warn Traffic)…When they Stop at the Bus Stop, Then They are to turn ON the Flashing Red Lights and Stop Sign….California Started to use Amber Lights, and Stop Signs in the Early 90’s. So they have been out there awhile…SHAME ON YOU DRIVERS THAT DON’T KNOW THAT….That excuse would not hold up in a court of Law. I Don’t know the details of this tragedy…And my Prayers go to all Parties Concerned…..One thing that I have Noticed over the Years of Driving.. Their are 3 issues that causes Accidents. (MY Opinion ONLY) 1. Everyone thinks they need to get there in a Hurry….2. They are NOT paying attention to what is going on….3. Both #1 and #2
so sad says
Prayers to the family. I always thought that the student shouldn’t cross the road until the bus driver gets out with their stop sign like a crossing guard and directs them across.
Scott M says
This is a terrible tragedy, when anyone dies, especially a child. It seems like the driver did the right thing by at least slowing down. I’m not sure why the boy was crossing if the red lights and stop sign were not out, but the bus driver should be interviewed as well in regards to this. Anyway you look at this it is terrible an innocent boy lost his life, what seems like an innocent driver must live with this, and a bus driver that witnessed it must relive it daily, as well as, a family that must mourn at the loss of their own. The crazy thing is I was driving behind a bus the other day, by about 40 yards when it had pulled over, but in the process had it’s stop sign and red lights flashing. I stopped in the road and was almost rear ended by about 8 cars and watched as people tried to speed around me…that is just pure negligence and disregard for children. This case with young Gage does seem to be the case.
R.I.P My prayers are to his family.
Gage was my student. He was a fun loving young man what a great smile and laugh. I had the duty and privilege of confirming for many students that what they heard was true and not a hoax. My wife and I have three children and I cannot imagine what his parents are going through. Drive safely please, and love while you can
L Hernandez says
I am so sorry for your loss.. I am crying just thikning about his parents. May you find peace
Thank you LH. I have been extra chatty these last two days and folks have allowed me to share. I had Gage in Health and PE. Great kid, big smile, respectful. Next week will be tough as we learn how to live without him. The kids have it the worst but they are resilient and will press on. Thanks again for your prayers keep them coming ;>
Please let us know when/where Gage’s funeral will be. My son Alex was a good friend of Gage’s in Jr. High. We moved across town last summer and just found out about this. We are devastated about this and our heart breaks for Gage’s parents.
Funeral service for Gage Rossi
Saturday. February 22, 2014
Intersection of 40th Street East and Avenue J
I’m sitting here reading the comments that others have made, and I never realized how many self righteous people we have living in our community. Yes this is very tragic and may have been avoided but however it was not done with malicious content. It was said the bus was pulling over which means it had not come to a full stop so therefore the stop sign would not have been out nor were the flashing lights on. We all have been a child so therefore we know that children do not think they will ever get hurt and are careless in there actions. So it is obviously a combination of many factors so please lighten up until the investigation is over.
So your saying that the child jumped off a bus while it was coming to a stop, then rushed around the front end to cross the St. and ran in front of the car as it was driving around it? Sorry. Though I agree that the drive did not maliciously intend on doing this, but that child could not have gotten off the bus unless it had come to a complete stop. Having been a bus driver I know that they are trained to pull over and come to a complete stop. Then they turn on the lights and set the stop sign. Then and only then are they suppose to open the door to let passengers off. Two things are likely to have happened. Either the Bus driver stopped then let the student off without turning the lights on and setting the sign and/or the driver was impatient and tried to pass before the Bus could set the light and sign. Take your pick as to which is the most likelihood.
The Buses that are built In 1995 and newer are designed to turn the Red Flashing Lights & Stop Sign on Automatically as soon as the Doors are Opened…That is the Law.
I thought this happened in the morning when the student was trying to catch the bus? Get the facts straight
It happened about 6 am in the morning – it was still dark – he was going TO the bus. This is tragic for his family – just pray for them. No other comments are needed.
Why didn’t the boy look before crossing I am a school bus driver they need to see if the lights and stop sign where activated before placing blame and why didn’t the kid look instead of just walking out into the street there is alot to investigate but I must admit everyday people disregard the lights and stop sign yes it happened at 6:10am he was catching the bus
First of all Prayers to this family. second, people are such in a hurry to get to someplace that they do no even pay attention to how they are driving…..there have been so many young adults and adults killed by cars in the past weeks it is crazy! if someone in front of you slows or stops anyone with brains would also do the same, this is not the case with these stupid in a hurry drivers that hurt or kill people! just the other day I was stopped in front of Ross to let people cross the street the guy behind me was throwing up his hands and pulled around me and almost hit the lady and her kid….where are the cops at this time? Today an ambulance was going down 10th West to get to the Freeway and what about 2 or 3 cars pulled over the others just went about their way driving causing the ambulance to have to go onto the wrong side of the street and try to weave in and out of traffic to get to the on ramp! this could have cost someone their life waiting to into the ER…people need to be more careful!
Mike Scott says
Lighten up ?????? Here is a fact for u , why don’t they pick him up where they drop him off ?? Afternoon they drop him off right in front if his gate . And not all kids are dumb as a sack of dirt how dare u assume he did not look before crossing he knows better than any one how people scream down that street he lives on it , by the way pedestrians have the right of way 100% off the time not anything less !!!!!!
It’s tragic and I am very mindful of his families pain as I am a parent… But to crucify the driver here isn’t fair. Can you imagine how he feels and what he has to live with the rest of his life! Accidents happen . I wasn’t there and if he was negligent then he should be held accountable… I’m not excusing him just merely saying What if this Happen To You …accidentally …you were so focused on the area around the bus you did not expect a ped crossing from Another direction ??? IDK. I hurt for the boys family I can’t imagine their pain and it is horrible. But the mental anguish of the driver must be debilitating also .. Judgement is not mine thou …
I have to add my comment to this point only because of the comment you made about how he the driver feels and what he has to live with the rest of his life..
My daughter was hit by a car 11/25/11 & passed away 1/31/14 after fighting 2+ years after her injuries. So I know for a fact that the driver has gone on with her life & doesnt even look back at this accident. I know this for a FACT because I as the mother of the child she hit in an Unmarked crosswalk, confronted the driver 8 months ago to finally get her side of the story. This driver tells me, “oh I thought all this time she was fine & everything was ok” as my daughter is still fighting to waken from a coma. When I confronted the driver about my daughters passing, her exact words were “oh, bummer at least you have another child at home” . Oh my it took EVERYTHING i had not to punch this lady! So, the moral of my story is these drivers dont give a crap, its not their family, not there child!
PRAYERS out to the family of the child.
No one, I mean No One can understand or relate till it happens to them. I Feel this families pain!
My only difference is my child fought for 2+ years, I was her primary caregiver for a year & watched her fight so hard & struggle & them pass. I think that is what is the hardest on us. My daughter was progressing!
Carrie your pain has muddled your mind. One driver does not equal “these drivers.”
Mike Scott says
We’ll said I agree
Really i’ve been driving a school bus for 14 yrs and I can’t tell you how many speed up to beat the Amber and then the dummies who still run our reds like there not even on I agree how can you not see the red lights flashing!!! Then on top of that I don’t know how many times all of us bus driver come close to getting hit by vehicles running the lights while we’re checking to see if it’s clear to cross kids and jumping back behind the bus to save us!!!! I would have to say bus driver have one of the hardest jobs out there PEOPLE open your eyes to the red flashing lights and STOP !!!!!!
Everyone is always in a rush these days! And it’s usually to no where special. It’s sad to see what can happen when you drive so selfishly these days. People need to slow down and be more respectful to the roads, signs, and most importantly people! Every time I am behind the wheel of my car I wonder how so many people have a license these days by the way they drive. Prayers go out to the family who is mourning the loss of that beautiful boy. God bless.
I totally agree with you! No one is thinking about others beyond themselves.
A school bus stops up the street from me. I often see people ignore the flashing red lights and stop sign on the bus.
Such a senseless tragedy!
My prayers go out to the familys
Lori Wolf says
For years of driving (and I’m 51 now) I did not know that if a school bus is stopped and has the stop sign turn out and red lights flashing – It is against the law and not a fun ticket. I’m not positive about main streets, but on a two way road, BOTH side of the street must stop until the bus driver changes that, turns off the light. Often people give into the pressure from drivers behind them that obviously aren’t aware. So, now matter what, you’ve got to stop. Let them go around you and get a ticket
How on earth could you NOT know that a stop sign and red flashers means that you MUST STOP??? I’m sorry but that is why things like this happen, because people don’t care enough to use common sense and/or take the time to learn the traffic laws.
I agree with you Kelly. I feel that that persons license should be revoked if they do not know that Red Flashing lights means STOP!! People like that make me so angry! Common sense? People now a days DON’T have any!
The fact that it is a School Bus should tell anyone driving near it, to watch out for kids, and be extra careful, despite the flashing lights or stop sign. Use caution anytime when a School Bus is present. I don’t think you can just depend on their flashing lights or stop signs, depend on you the driver who is driving near it. God Bless all involved.
I also think that people forget and don’t always think there was any danger, when there is, so we just got to be careful at all times, and realize that its good to be extra careful at all times.
Ms. Wolf, Your First Sentence scares Me….RED means STOP! And STOP SIGNs means STOP……You are correct about the 2 Lane Roads, and you can’t go until the SB Driver turns off the Lights. The biggest Safety Issue with a School Bus is not the Inside of the Bus. It’s what Happens Outside the Bus…This Tragedy is Prime Example. School Bus Drivers deal with your Precious Cargo EVERDAY. Some times it’s a Thank less Job.
soapbox journal says
I always stop when I see a school bus pulled over, put my four ways on and wait, I was always taught when you see the red lights on the bus you stop. I do it and I am confident the bus driver did use the stop sign and the red lights, I saw a driver in Palmdale blow right by a bus discharging students with the red lights and stop sign working, I was across the street and I stopped. I am sorry dear child that your life was cut short, I am sorry for the family.
We set up a fund to help the family with the costs of the service. If anybody would like to donate it would be appreciated. Thank you for your compassion.
We have just become so careless, as a society. Why is everyone always in such a rush? My heart breaks for this family… a totally preventable tragedy.
It sad cause he hasn’t lived his full life and he went to the same school as my sister eastside highschool RIP Gage Rossi
He slowed down to pass the bus, as sad as it is, it’s better than the speed he was maintaining before he seen the bus move to the shoulder. Makes me sad when I read about kids dying while crossing the street. I lost a good friend of mine back in middle school because of a driver that was doing 55 MPH on a street.
RIP It is sad that people just drive like they are the only ones on the road. I see it every day people just do not care!!
Cops don’t write enough traffic tickets
A richard says
He had slowed to 30 35mph, he obviously was looking and noticed the bus pulling over, was not acting like he was the only one on the road…. I always do the same, slow down…. And look in the direction of the bus to see if a kid might dart out chasing a ball or loose paper, very rarely do I focus much on the opposite side of the road since I am looking around the bus because in the past have seen kids run out around one before. If a child needs to cross to get to the bus, the bus driver would stop the bus, activate the flashing reds and sometimes I have seen them exit the bus with a hand sign and walk out and have the child walk across after all cars are stopped…. If he blew through the flashing reds is one thing but slowing and hitting a child on accident is another…. I am a careful driver and have had some close calls of animals, kids, and even adults fly out in front of me from the opposite side of the road when I am focused on something that potentially is going to run out in front of me…. My closets call was when I slowed down because I saw a group of kids kicking a ball around almond Palmdale Blvd and it made me focus on them because I was thinking “why are they playing here on a bust road” and as I slowed my approach focusing on them not paying attention to how close they were getting to the edge of the road, a bicyclist flew out in front of me on the opposite side and I almost hit them….. So the main thing in most all pedestrians struck by cars is when crossing a path that is frequented by cars or trains…. Don’t cross until you know you can make it across without coming into contact with larger object…. RIP….
Jo hastings says
The focus seems to be on whether or not the bus driver activated the lights and stop sign and whether the driver of the car exercised adequate caution! However, the boy also had a responsibility to look both ways before crossing! That was the very first thing I taught my children when they were old enough to walk without my holding their hand. The bus driver, the driver of the car and the boy each had a responsibility to use caution and this tragic accident would probably not have happened if all three had!
A Richard says
A school bus has to be stopped before turning on red flashing lights and may turn on flashing yellow lights to signal it is stopping…. So who knows if the bus was even stopped yet.
The Driver by LAW has to activate the Amber Lights before they get to the STOP….May turn on the Ambers is out of the Question….State Law mandates it! That’s same for ALL STOPS. weather AM or PM….And Makes no difference if they Cross the Street or NOT!
Stop assigning blame. Just stop it. The heartbreak his family feels is beyond your comprehension. Just pray for them – and keep everything else to yourself.
I can’t believe no arrests were made, rest peacefully Gage, my God comfort your family through this tough time.
Jan doe says
If you read it carfully it said the driver slowed down, bus lights were NOT on and it was very dark! out! So if the drive did nothing wrong why an arrest?? You weren’t there so you can’t put ur two cents I work in law and I know if he was check for anything and passed all test plus if he was at wrong then there would have been arrest or a cited at the time, the wrong was bus lights were not on at the time driver slowed down. To 30mph and the child ran in front of car. I pray for the family and the driver and the bus driver.