JAMES CITY COUNTY, Va. (WAVY) — If you pass a school bus illegally this school year, James City County police are warning that they’ll likely catch you on camera.
On Thursday, the police department posted an image on Facebook showing a clear image of a gray Honda that passed a stopped bus with its stop arm extended and lights on. The license plate and face of the driver were blurred, but details such as the month on the inspection sticker and warning labels on the inside visors could be clearly seen.
Along with the photo, James City County police said in just the first three days of school for Williamsburg-James City County Public Schools, police had already issued 71 citations for school bus-related violations.
In mid-August, WJCC Schools announced the division had equipped more than 150 school buses with stop-arm cameras.
BusPatrol gave the equipment and installed it, which includes 360-degree safety cameras and GPS. The division is the first to use new wide-angle lenses. The equipment is maintained at no cost to the schools.
The technology is funded by the drivers that violate the law, according to BusPatrol.
So, what’s the law?
Drivers must stay stopped when approaching from any direction when a school bus has flashing red lights and an extended stop sign and remain stopped until the bus moves again. They must also remain stopped if passengers are coming or going, even if lights aren’t activated.
The penalty for first-time offenders is $250.
Drivers are not required to stop on the opposite side of a median or barrier .
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