VALLEY STREAM, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A family from Valley Stream, Long Island, has been left devastated as their son fights for his life in the hospital.
The boy was hit by a car at what his parents said is a very dangerous intersection near a school and church, and the family has demanded action so other children will not get hurt.
As CBS 2’s Jennifer McLogan reported Tuesday, Mohamed Tarek’s parents said their 14-year-old son’s recovery is now in God’s hands.
Mohamed lay in a hospital bed in critical condition Monday, having been struck by a car just a few hundred feet from his Valley Stream home back on Dec. 3.
“He had a total of six surgeries – brain,” said the boy’s father, Ahmed Tarek.
The young teen, a freshman at Elmont High, had just left a basketball game – walking to his home near Central Avenue and Salem Road. At that point, sidewalks end, giving way to fast-moving two-way traffic along entrance and exit ramps to the Southern State Parkway.
“It’s a bad intersection,” a motorist said.
The ramps converge into a large intersection, lacking any clear safety signals for pedestrians, McLogan reported. Even the bus stop has no sidewalk.
“This is where he was crossing from — his body was flung up in the air,” said Karim Mozawalla of Valley Stream. “And this is the second person who is critically injured in our community within the last month. We need to make changes here very quickly.”
The surrounding neighborhood has changed dramatically since exit 13 was built in the 1950s. There is now heavy foot traffic, with an elementary school, a mosque, a church, and a residential boulevard. But there is just one crosswalk and poor lighting, and children such as Mohamed are forced to teeter alongside traffic.
“I have not worked like almost like two and half months — still every day, I go to the hospital — every day, every day,” his father said.
The boy’s family members said they are torn apart, and live in daily anguish – driving back and forth to Stony Brook University Hospital in Stony Brook.
Mohamed’s parents believe their son’s accident could have been prevented. State Assemblywoman Michaelle Solanges (D-Valley Stream) agreed and demanded action from the state and county.
“A lot of traffic is coming into our area,” Solages said. “And it’s imperative that we redesign and rethink a lot of these intersections, especially intersections that interface with highways, such as the Southern State.”
The New York State Department of Transportation responded promptly to CBS 2’s inquiry and said the Traffic Safety Department would begin monitoring the area.
A 28-year-old woman who was struck and injured in a separate accident at the intersection also remained hospitalized as of Monday. And Mohamed’s future remained uncertain.
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