Troy school buses to use cameras to record drivers who don’t stop

Three new school buses being purchased by the Troy City Schools will include camera systems on stop arms and the vehicle dash to record oncoming traffic in an effort to better identify drivers who fail to stop for buses with flashing lights and stop signs activated.

School officials say they’ve seen an increase of drivers passing stopped buses picking up or dropping off students.

Jeff Price, district treasurer and chief financial officer, told the board of education that problems have been noticed on a few routes.

“We have not had any issues per se involving students but we want to corral that issue before the potential of having students injured,” he said.

Buses on routes where problems have been reported also will be retrofitted with the cameras, Price said.

The buses currently do not have cameras to record motorists. The new system will record video of the oncoming traffic and passing traffic with the potential of recording the license plates, Price said.

Troy Police Capt. Joe Long said school officials contacted the department about a year ago with concerns about vehicles passing stopped buses. He said he has not noticed an increase in the number of bus driver complaints.

The largest problem areas have been on Water Street, Dorset Road and County Road 25A, a portion which lies in Miami County, Long said.

The video that would be provided by the new bus cameras “would be similar to we have in our cars on traffic stops,” he said.

Price said drivers report to the police department drivers who don’t stop, and any information they were able to obtain such as vehicle description and license plate, if it could be read. The drivers complete paperwork and wait to talk to an officer when one is available. “That is pretty much where it stops. It is you say, they say,” he said.

The recordings should help in pursuing cases, Long said. “More information is better for us on any case we are working on,” he said.

The maximum fine for failing to stop for a stopped school bus is $500.

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