ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – An Avalon Park mother is searching for answers after her 12-year-old son was injured in a car crash while on his bike last Friday.
Felicia Lakharam said her worst fear became a reality when her 12-year-old son was hurt in a hit-and-run while riding his bike. The recent crash has traumatized Lakharam and her son. She said she’s now considering getting rid of all of her children’s bicycles.
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“I tell my son you’re never going to ride a bike again,” Lakharam said.
According to Florida Highway Patrol, the driver of a silver sedan was heading north on Avalon Park Boulevard when they hit Lakharam’s son as he crossed Auburn Cove Lane. The driver then drove off, leaving Lakharam’s son on the road.
“The fact is you left my son for dead,” Lakharam said. “You left a child, you knew it was a child, he had on a backpack.”
The collision left Lakharam’s son with a broken kneecap and possibly other injuries.
“It’s terrible,” Lakharam said. “Like we returned back to the ER last night just because the pain was excruciating, his extremity had gotten numb, we didn’t know what was going on so it’s like a back and forth.”
The community has pushed for results at this intersection in the past. A couple years ago, Orange County took action and put in a crosswalk. However, neighbors tell News 6 crashes still happen and more needs to be done.
“We’re all talking about some sort of safety, traffic device,” Lakharam said. “Raised speed bumps, raised crosswalk, crosswalk signs, lights because look if this is during the day, and look those people aren’t using the crosswalk.”
Another neighbor also mentioned adding lights to the pedestrian crossing.
“Some intersections they at least have the little lights so that you can press a button so it lights up so that the drivers can actually have an idea too that somebody is -- a pedestrian is passing by a crossing,” said Yan Rodriguez, an Avalon Park resident. “I think it’s ideal to at least do something about it.”
At the time of the crash, Lakharam’s son was not in the crosswalk.
Lakharam said she and other neighbors are organizing a plan to go to the county and ask for changes to the intersection. News 6 reached out to Orange County Commissioner Maribel Gomez Cordero about implementing some of the safety measures neighbors want to see and have not yet heard back.
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