One of the buses equipped with cameras. Max Winkelman photo.

B.C. school district installs cameras on school buses to catch illegally passing drivers

Residents warned about hefty fines

School District 27 in the Cariboo has been installing cameras to catch drivers passing them while they’re stopped to load or unload students, which means some drivers may be faced with a heavy fine weeks after the fact.

“Some of our buses now have the ability to take video footage outside the bus and so we’re able to see when people go through our load lights at bus stops,” says Randy Cobb, assistant manager of facilities and transportation with the school district.

100 Mile House Staff Sgt. Svend Nielsen described one such an incident late last year.

“We had a report from a school bus driver on Dec. 5, 2018 at 8 a.m. of a vehicle passing a school bus with its warning lights and stop signs activated on a regular route along Horse Lake Road at Fallsway Road. Basically, the bus was doing a routine stop picking up students on their way to school heading eastbound on Horse Lake Road, when a dark blue older model Pontiac heading westbound slowed down as if to stop, then continued through at an accelerated speed nearly colliding with another vehicle which appeared to pull out behind the bus as well, causing the driver of the Pontiac to make an evasive manoeuver to avoid a collision.”

Children were loading and parents were standing at Fallsway Road during the incident, according to Nielsen.

“The vehicle was identified through the use of the new cameras placed on one of five new buses in our area. The cameras are HD quality and offer high-resolution video and images from their system. It was fairly easy and straightforward to identify the vehicle and licence plate.”

Nielsen issued a $368 fine under Section 149 of the Motor Vehicle Act (Fail to Stop for School Bus) to the registered owner about two weeks later as a result.

The first such camera was added a couple of years ago now, according to Cobb.

“There is camera companies that have that technology now. So we’re taking advantage of it.”

Cobb suspects that at least they don’t get repeats because it is a “substantial fine.”

The passing of loading or unloading school buses is a regular issue, according to Cobb.

“It’s fairly constant in our district. It’s probably weekly.”

There haven’t been any incidents involving students recently, according to Cobb.

“There have been what I would say maybe close calls where students are already off the bus trying to cross when they go through but not lately anyways that someone has been nearly hit. It’s scary when it happens for everybody.”

The cameras are recording all the time, says Cobb. Then when there’s an incident the driver can let them know and they’ll look up the footage.


newsroom@100milefreepress.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Mission mom wages battle to get back four kids taken from her in Egypt

Sara Lessing had help from an Abbotsford law firm

Cougar sighting by Mission’s Hillside Traditional keeps kids inside

Students had to be picked up by parents at end of day as a precaution

Deroche Elementary students release 40,000 salmon fry

Fish were placed in the stream running through the school’s property, on its way to the Fraser River

Rainfall warning: Up to 70 mm expected across Fraser Valley

Environment Canada issued a weather warning heading into the long weekend

BC Ferries to pilot selling beer and wine on select routes

Drinks from select B.C. breweries and VQA wineries to be sold on Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen route

VIDEO: Alberta man creates world’s biggest caricature

Dean Foster is trying to break the world record for a radio show contest

Man driving wrong way on Highway 17 ‘seriously’ injured after crash: Surrey RCMP

Police say the driver hit a transport truck, then another car after merging from the off-ramp onto highway

Should B.C. lower speed limits on side roads to 30 km/h?

Vancouver city councillor wants to decrease speed limits along neighbourhood side roads

Lawsuit eyed over union-only raise for B.C. community care workers

‘Low-wage redress’ leaves 17,000 employees out, employers say

Landlord of alleged Okanagan shooter recounts deadly day

Tony Friesen was working in one of the units of his Penticton building when he heard shots

Foreign national arrested in connection to thefts at YVR

A woman, 60, is being held in police custody as Richmond RCMP investigate

Police pursue pesky porker on Vancouver Island

‘This was allegedly not the pig’s first escape’

Mission Cedar Kings improve to 2-0

Lacrosse team takes down Burnaby Lakers on Saturday

Rare ‘Snow Tower’ tree blooming in Vancouver city park

A plant rarely grown in Canada is now flowering at the Bloedel Conservatory in Queen Elizabeth Park

Most Read