Spartanburg CO to Receive School Bus Cameras to Help Catch Stop - WSPA.com

Spartanburg CO to Receive School Bus Cameras to Help Catch Stop Arm Violators

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A test program to reduce the number of school bus stop arm violations is seeing big results and creating big changes in Rowan County North Carolina.

Now a similar program is coming to Spartanburg County.

Judy Burris, retired Transportation Director at the Rowan County School District tells 7 On Your Side she knew they had to act after three students died from people ignoring a school bus stop arm.

“It was shocking. It was a life lost all by not paying attention or being in a hurry,” said Burris.

That’s when they installed cameras on some of their buses as part of a grant from the governor’s office to catch violators and help law enforcement prosecute them.

“The pictures, clear video, all used as evidence, has helped reduce stop arm violations in our county,” she said.

In the Upstate a student died in Cherokee County because someone ran a stop arm. District officials and parents in Anderson County tell us they’re also frustrated and believe it’s time to crack down on stop arm violators.

Spartanburg County is now participating in a pilot program run by the State Association For Pupil Transportation, to put cameras on about 5 buses and hopefully get results.

“The drivers deal with this all the time. They try to get the tag numbers but the way the law was there wasn’t much able to be done without a police officer sees them,” said Linton Carpenter, Spartanburg District 7 Transportation Director

South Carolina law now states buses may mount cameras on the side with a clear view of vehicles plate numbers and drivers.

The company Fortress Mobile uses three of these cameras per bus giving a front, rear and side view, infrared capability for evenings and mornings and a zoom lens. They helped Rowan County in their pilot program.

The law also says the video and pictures can be used as evidence to issue a citation. Carpenter said he believes this may help law enforcement too.

“They can’t be everywhere all the time so this can be a tool that they can take with them and get them what they need,” said Carpenter.

We spoke with law enforcement officials who said they would feel comfortable writing a ticket with that amount of information.

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Christine is a Digital Journalist, General Assignment and Weekend reporter.
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