Thursday, May 24, 2018
Public safety

Madeira Beach crossing guard injured in accident on first day of school

MADEIRA BEACH — A school crossing guard was struck and injured by a bicyclist trying to avoid an accident on the first day of classes in Pinellas County, authorities said.

The accident, just after 7:15 a.m. Monday, happened at a crossing near Madeira Beach Fundamental School.

Pinellas deputies said 89-year-old Susan E. Daugherty, who has been a crossing guard for four years, was accidentally sideswiped by bicyclist Hung The Nguyen, 92, of Seminole.

Nguyen was trying to avoid a crash that had just occurred at Duhme Road and American Legion Drive.

According to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office, driver Michelle Tallman, 37, of St. Petersburg turned south onto Duhme Road from American Legion Drive.

Tallman had a green light, officials said, but Duhme was backed up because of school drop-off traffic.

As Tallman tried to maneuver the turn, her 2011 Honda Pilot struck a southbound 2005 Mazda Tribute being driven by Kari Monefeldt, 44, of Largo.

The Mazda spun into the path of Nguyen, who had been going north on the road.

Nguyen swerved and hit Daugherty, who was treated at the scene for minor injuries.

Monefeldt went to Largo Medical Center with minor injuries. Nguyen and Tallman weren't injured.

The accident came on the same day that school district and law enforcement officials throughout the Tampa Bay area warned motorists to slow down as students return to school.

Mayors, police and fire chiefs in Pinellas went to several intersections and waved signs Monday morning. In some cities, police officers were stationed in school zones to issue tickets for speeding, crosswalk and school bus violations.

Tallman was issued a citation for careless driving, Pinellas officials said.

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