It’s something kids do every day it’s almost routine but can be extremely dangerous, getting on and off a school bus. The Richland School District hopes that new technology on their buses they can make this part of student’s days safer.
Every Richland school bus now has cameras on the outside that record other drivers on the road and can catch vehicles that illegally pass a stopped school bus. Richland School District Superintendent Arnold Nadonley, says since February 5th they’ve caught 28 drivers with the cameras they bought with grant money.
“It’s alarming the number and it’s no specific area it’s not just limited to scalp avenue it’s in rural areas it’s in urban areas. Out of our entire fleet of 19 buses out on the road it just seems to be no single bus that’s catching them all or catching the violators,” said Arnold Nadonley the superintendent of the Richland School District.
Nick Zakucia, Chief of Police for Geistown Borough, says these cameras make it easier for them to catch drivers that violate school bus laws. He says since they can’t always be there when it happens these videos give them proof in court and help identify the driver and the vehicle. Violators can face a $250 fine, five points on their driving record and a 60-day license suspension.
School bus driver David Pitkins says there’s a lot a bus driver needs to keep their eyes on from the students seated, kids getting on or off the bus and traffic around them. Pitkins hopes the new cameras will stop people from passing his bus.
“When cars come flying down through there and you let a child off, especially one that has to go in front of the bus and cross the street and they don’t stop I’ve had parents stand on the side of the road and wave at drivers and things like that. We’ve had a few close calls,” said bus driver David Pitkins.