U.S. Transportation Safety Agency to States: Enact Lifesaving Law to Permit Stop-Arm Cameras on School Buses to Issue Citations to Negligent Drivers
BusPatrol applauds the NTSB’s Latest Safety Recommendations for Improved School Bus Safety Enforcement Measures.
LORTON, Va., April 7, 2020 — BusPatrol, a leading school bus safety technology company, applauds the National Transportation Safety Board’s (NTSB) recommendations encouraging the adoption of stop-arm cameras to deter drivers from illegally passing stopped school buses.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) today called on states to combat school bus stop-arm violations by enacting laws enabling local jurisdictions to install automated enforcement cameras on stop-arms and to issue citations to violators caught on camera.
On April 7, 2020, the NTSB released the abstract for its investigative report on the fatal collision involving four students who were crossing a road to board a stopped school bus in Rochester, Indiana, on October 30, 2018. Three of the student pedestrians, all of the same family, were killed.
The NTSB report included the following findings and recommendations:
The use of stop-arm cameras can deter drivers from illegally passing stopped school buses.
States are encouraged to enact legislation to permit stop-arm cameras to capture images and allow citations to be issued for illegal school bus passings based on the camera-obtained evidence packages.
Funding for school bus equipment is limited; therefore, school systems need more information on which technologies are most effective in reducing the illegal passing of school buses to make the best use of their resources.
The tragedy that occurred in Indiana is not an isolated incident. Over six days in late 2018, six students were killed, and eight students and two adults were injured by vehicles, either violating school bus stop arms or hitting students and adults while they were waiting at a bus stop.
In 2019, school bus drivers from 39 states participated in a voluntary one-day nationwide safety survey and reported that 95,494 vehicles passed their buses illegally. Throughout a 180-day school year, these sample results point to more than 17 million violations among America’s motoring public. The number of incidents is likely far higher, since not all school bus drivers participated in the voluntary survey, according to survey sponsor, the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services.
“NTSB is the gold standard for safety across all modes of transportation,” said Jean Souliere, CEO of BusPatrol, a seamless stop-arm enforcement program provider with an ongoing mission to secure and modernize school bus fleets across America.
At least 22 states have enacted stop-arm laws to catch and punish motorists who pass stopped school buses by allowing local jurisdictions to install cameras on the outside of the bus to record illegal passings, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
“It’s time for the nation’s governors and policymakers to urgently embrace this child safety technology,” said Souliere. “Enforcement and education go hand in hand. By modernizing traditional enforcement through AI-enabled stop-arm cameras and cloud-connected safety technology, we change motorist behavior and safeguard children on their journey to and from school.”