Maine-Endwell school buses now have an added layer of protection for our Spartans thanks to the new School Bus Stop-Arm Safety Program. The district is partnering with Broome County Government to bring the program to M-E and other county school districts.
Broome County is committed to the safety of our children and dedicated to reducing school bus arm violations. It is illegal and incredibly dangerous for a vehicle to pass a stopped school bus with its stop arm extended and lights flashing.
The School Bus Stop-Arm Safety Program equips Broome County’s school bus fleets with state-of-the-art stop-arm safety technology including stop-arm cameras, DVR and storage devices, internal cameras, GPS, telemetry and LTE connectivity. The goal of the program is to effectively reduce the illegal passing of a stopped school bus through training and educational campaigns, along with video equipment that activates while the stop arm is extended, and red lights are actively flashing. School bus stop-arm safety cameras ensure our children’s safety when getting on or off a bus.
Here’s how it works. The automated camera system activates when the school bus is stopped, and its lights are flashing and stop-arm are engaged. Multiple cameras, mounted in key locations on the bus, record video showing the violating vehicle. The event images extracted from the video include not only the vehicle as it passes the
school bus, but also the vehicle’s license plate and the extended stop arm of the bus. The video of the vehicle is provided as further evidence of the event. Violation enforcement is completed utilizing a video evidentiary system which is screened by local law enforcement.
If law enforcement determines the event is a violation, a notice is issued and mailed to the vehicle owner. The fine amount is $250 for a first offense, $275 for the second within 18 months and $300 for subsequent offense in 18 months.
The warning period is taking place now, with full enforcement taking place on June 24.
KNOW THE LAW: NEW YORK STATE MOTOR VEHICLE LAW 1174-A
Section 1174(a), a driver who meets or overtakes a school bus (from either direction) that has stopped to receive or discharge any passengers, and which has at least one flashing red signal lamp, must stop their vehicle before reaching said school bus. The driver must also remain stopped until the bus continues moving or signals for the driver to pass, or until a police officer gives the driver permission to continue.