LAND O' LAKES, Fla. - A mother was killed and her son badly injured in a pedestrian accident in Land O' Lakes this morning, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.
Susan K. Lewis, 45, died at the scene in the Wilderness Lakes subdivision. The child was airlifted to St. Joseph's Hospital and is listed in stable condition.
According to neighbors, the mother was walking with her autistic son to a neighborhood school bus stop. The bus stop is across the street from their home, but the two typically walked down the street to a crosswalk for safety reasons. They were at the crosswalk on Night Heron Drive when they were hit around 8:30 a.m.
Ana Treciak lives right in front of where the crash happened. "My dog started barking and I was getting ready for the day. I was getting my son ready for school," she said. "We looked out the window and we saw already. Right after."
For people living on Night Heron Drive, this was their worst fear.
Treciak said "That's why it shook us so badly because we live here and we witness that every day on how fast cars are going by without thinking twice that this is a private community that we are all walking with our children."
"I see people speeding through here all the time. Speed limit is 20 miles an hour. You just wonder what these people are thinking as they go through here," said another neighbor, David Brendle.
Residents say they've been asking for speed bumps on this public street for years. "So we are hoping that something will be done to change the situation. So we can feel safe in the community. Because we love the community," said Treciak.
The Florida Highway Patrol has not said speed was a factor in this accident, just that Williams failed to observe the mother and son crossing the street.
The management company in charge of the subdivision say they just put up security cameras at the front entrance. One of them was installed yesterday. And although they would appear to have captured exactly what happened, management said the cameras are not yet operational.
Neighbors like David Brendle are in shock. "You get to know people and it's just like losing part of your family when somebody, especially a next door neighbor of 5 years dies. It's just unbelievable. Shows you just how little time you have."
The driver of the 2006 Mitsubishi sedan, 64-year-old Eugene A. Williams of Land O' Lakes, was being questioned. There is no word yet on any charges.
Copyright 2010 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
A chance for patchy fog early, lots of sunshine and warmer than normal temperatures continue!