Authorities are investigating the death of an 8-year-old boy, who was struck by a trash truck Wednesday afternoon in Newport Beach.
The incident occurred at about 1:30 p.m. at the intersection of 15th Street and Michael Place in a quiet, residential neighborhood near Newport Harbor High School.
When members of the Newport Beach Fire Department arrived, they found the boy behind the truck. The boy, who wasn’t immediately identified, was dead from “massive injuries,” Newport Beach police Lt. Jeff Brouwer said.
It’s unclear how the accident occurred and it remains under investigation by the California Highway Patrol because it involves a commercial vehicle, he added.
Late Wednesday afternoon, the boy’s bike remained under the truck owned by CR&R Inc., a Stanton company that contracts with Newport Beach for trash collection.
There were apparently no witnesses and police were attempting to determine if the boy was riding or walking his bike when he was struck, Brouwer said.
The trash truck was apparently on its collection route at the time of the accident, Carlos Lima, vice president of Human Resources CR&R Inc., said.
“We are extremely saddened by this tragic accident,” said Lima, adding that his company is cooperating with the police investigation. “Our heart goes out to the family and parents of this young man.”
Several bystanders looked on from the sidewalk as police Wednesday afternoon interviewed the driver of the truck, whom they described as cooperative. There is no evidence that speed or impaired driving contributed to the collision, Brouwer said. No citations had been issued.
Gina Cereda, who lives near the location, said the boy who was killed was a third-grader at Newport Heights Elementary and was her son’s best friend.
“He was a wonderful boy and gifted athlete,” she said tearfully. “His family is devastated.”
The Newport Beach Fire Department sent grief counselors to the scene for its first responders. Newport Heights Elementary officials notified parents late Wednesday afternoon of the boy’s death.
“We are deeply saddened to learn about the death of a Newport Heights Elementary School student today,” school officials said in a statement. “Our thoughts and sympathies are with the family and everyone affected by this tragedy.”
The school plans to make counseling services available on campus in response to the boy’s death.
News Source via OC Register: http://www.ocregister.com/articles/newport-717151-child-beach.html