Santa Rosa County District Schools has released new videos showing almost 200 motorists illegally passing stopped school buses during this year’s back-to-school period.
The footage was captured through a pilot program with BusPatrol, the leading stop-arm enforcement technology provider, providing a firsthand look into the dangerous driving behavior that put Florida children in danger when getting on and off a school bus.
Jean Souliere, CEO and Founder of BusPatrol, said: “Florida is facing a crisis when it comes to school bus safety. These violations are some of the most deliberate and dangerous acts we have seen in the country, and I all Floridians to join us in working to give our police and law enforcement the tools they need to keep our kids safe.”
To kick off National School Bus Safety Week, Santa Rosa County District Schools and BusPatrol shared the pilot results to raise awareness about the dangers of illegally passing stopped school buses.
Throughout August and September, five buses equipped with AI-powered stop-arm cameras recorded a total of 176 stop-arm violations, equal to 0.9 per bus per day. The week of September 18 was the most dangerous, with a violation rate of 1.7 violations per bus per day.
Florida is one of several states that do not allow automated enforcement technology to help catch violators who pass a stopped school bus. The results of this pilot demonstrate just how widespread this illegal activity remains and how often it goes unreported. Without a fix to Florida state law, local communities and law enforcement will continue to be denied permission to use photo enforcement as evidence to cite motorists who break school bus traffic laws that put children at risk.
The trial program with Santa Rosa County District Schools is part of a larger state initiative with school districts, including Brevard County Public Schools and Duval County Public Schools.
The Florida State Department of Education estimates that more than 10,000 drivers in Florida unlawfully pass stopped school buses each day.