NEWTON COUNTY, Ga. — Newton County Schools has partnered with American Traffic Solutions (ATS) to deploy CrossingGuard, ATS' technology to help address illegal passing of stopped school buses.
The CrossingGuard school bus arm safety solution mounts high-resolution cameras to the front and rear driver’s side of a school bus. When the stop arm is deployed, the camera automatically detects a vehicle illegally passing the stop arm in either direction and captures video of the violation and still images of the vehicle's license plate.
The violation video and license plate images are then reviewed by law enforcement for approval prior to a citation being issued.
“Student safety is always our primary focus,” said Michael Barr, director of support services for Newton County Schools. “This initiative provides us with a way to educate motorists about school bus stop laws and the dangers posed by drivers that violate these laws. By educating drivers and changing dangerous driving behaviors, we are better able to protect the lives of the children who ride a school bus to and from school every day. We are pleased to have this additional tool as part of our overall safety program.”
Newton County Schools expects to have cameras installed at the start of the 2012-13 school year. The district is reportedly the second in the state of Georgia that plans to implement CrossingGuard. As SBF previously reported, Carroll County Schools in Carrollton, Ga., also expects to have cameras installed at the start of the upcoming school year.
In Georgia, the penalty for a first stop-arm violation will warrant the vehicle's owner a $300 fine. The fine for a second violation is $750, and a third violation in a five-year period will result in a $1,000 fine.