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Girl, 11, in critical condition after being struck by van near Petaluma school

An 11-year-old girl suffered what police said were serious injuries Tuesday afternoon when she was struck by a van while crossing a street near her Petaluma elementary school.

The 6th grader at McKinley School ran or walked quickly into Ellis Street outside of a crosswalk and was struck and run over by a white Ford van, police said.

She suffered serious injuries to her upper and lower body and was taken by ambulance to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital where police said she was listed in critical condition.

Police do not believe her injuries were life-threatening.

Another girl who was crossing the street with her was not struck by the van, police said.

The accident occurred in front of McKinley School and was reported at 2:52 p.m., seven minutes after students at the school had been let out for the day.

A school crossing guard was on duty at the crosswalk on Ellis Street, near Martin Circle, but the girls entered the street a block south, near a school driveway where there is no designated crosswalk, said Lt. Tim Lyons of the Petaluma Police Department.

The van swerved in its lane but was unable to avoid one of the girls, Lyons said. The driver stopped and was cooperating with police. Lyons said there was no indication the driver was exceeding the posted 25 mph speed limit.

"There is no indication of fault by the driver," he said.

The accident was witnessed by a number of students and parents and police said they received multiple calls reporting the collision.


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