Chesapeake school buses to get cameras to catch drivers breaking the law

Chesapeake

CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) — Cameras from all different angles that can capture drivers breaking the law are now a part of Chesapeake school buses.

“From time to time, people don’t necessarily adhere to the law and stop for the school buses,” Chesapeake Police Chief Kelvin Wright said.

Chesapeake Public Schools Superintendent Jared Cotton says every school bus will soon have the cameras.

“We’re excited to install cameras on every single bus. I believe were at 583 or 584 at this point. Every bus will have one installed,” said Dr. Cotton.

There will be cameras facing the front, some on the side, some on the back and some inside of the bus as well.

So, to avoid a ticket, when is it illegal for a person to pass a bus that had its red lights on or the stop arm extended?

“If there’s no median, or just a lane where cars travel in one direction on a paved section of roadway, in that case you do have to stop,” said Chesapeake traffic enforcement officer Kenneth Byrd.

If you’re on a divided roadway where there is unpaved space, a raised median, or physical barrier, only the vehicles traveling with the bus must stop. Those traveling in the opposite direction can go, but must be cautious.

Chesapeake Police partnered with Chesapeake Public Schools and BusPatrol and here’s how it works:

“If a violation takes place, then it transfers to bus patrol, bus patrol has a center up in northern Virginia where humans review the video footage,” said Byrd.

Any information about the car including the license plate information will be collected.

“They will gather that information through the DMV they’ll then send it to me and I will review the video and I’ll determine if it took place,” he said.

A sworn officer will process the footage.

If the driver was caught illegally passing a bus, the driver will be mailed a violation. There’s an option to pay the violation or go to court.

The superintendent expects the system to start up in March.

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