Reporting Monique Griego
ELLICOTT CITY, Md. (WJZ) — An Ellicott City student remains in the hospital in critical condition after he and four other students are hit by a Mack truck as they left school.
Monique Griego has the latest on the investigation.
People who live near the high school say the area is prone to accidents. Now they want changes.
Thursday afternoon, just outside Mt. Hebron High School in Ellicott City, a Honda Civic carrying five students was ripped apart after it was hit by a Mack truck while pulling out of the school’s parking lot.
“I heard a terrible crash, sounded more like a crunching,” said Catherine Markowski, neighbor.
Markowski watched as the students were pulled from the wreckage and rushed to the hospital.
“When they cleared everything away and I saw what was left of the car, I couldn’t imagine that anyone had walked away from that,” she said.
The driver, 18-year-old Jeffrey Sinclair, remains in critical condition at Shock Trauma.
The four other students hurt in the crash were treated and released from the hospital Thursday.
“Definitely hit us hard. We weren’t expecting anything like this,” said Garrett Smith, student.
As students band together to deal with what happened, others are calling for changes on the road.
“It’s a dangerous area, always has been and is getting worse,” Markowski said.
Neighbors have expressed concerns over this area in the past, saying the 40 mile per hour speed limit is too high. They want to see it reduced or have something like speed bumps put in.
“I’m always holding my breath because I feel like there’s going to be more accidents,” Markowski said.
Howard County police say a preliminary investigation shows the students may have failed to stop at a stop sign and yield to the truck.
Whatever the cause, students say they’re learning a tough lesson.
“Anything can happen in a split second and definitely become more defensive drivers,” Smith said.
As of right now police do not believe the driver of the truck was speeding.
The investigation into the crash is ongoing.
School leaders did make counselors and other resources available to students Friday.