All school buses in Mattawa, Ontario, are now equipped with safety technology, including stop-arm cameras to crack down on motorists who pass stopped school buses.
The safety technology from BusPatrol was installed on Mattawa’s school buses due to the efforts of the Let’s Remember Adam – Stop for the School Bus campaign, according to a document on the campaign’s website. The initiative was started almost 20 years ago after 5-year-old Adam Ranger was tragically killed on his way home from school by a motorist who failed to stop for the stopped school bus with its lights flashing. Since then, Pierre Ranger’s family has continued to raise awareness about school bus safety and stop-arm enforcement through educational programs.
On Tuesday, the Let’s Remember Adam campaign held a virtual event announcing the launch of the BusPatrol safety program in Mattawa. The virtual event, which also would have marked Adam’s 26th birthday, featured several speakers, including Ranger, Adam’s brother and chairman of the Let’s Remember Adam campaign, BusPatrol CEO Jean Souliere, Premier of Ontario Doug Ford, and Mattawa’s Mayor Dean Backer. (Watch a video of the virtual event.)
“This milestone will help make the journey to and from school safer for children in the Mattawa and surrounding area,” the campaign stated on its website. “BusPatrol’s technology will change driver behavior and educate motorists on the laws regarding when to stop for school buses.”
Mattawa is reportedly the first jurisdiction to implement the BusPatrol program in Ontario.
BusPatrol uses a stop-arm camera box designed with two high-definition cameras that can monitor up to eight lanes of traffic, according to the Let’s Remember Adam campaign. In addition to the stop-arm cameras, BusPatrol has also installed sideload, interior, and rearview cameras, as well as DVR, GPS, telemetry, and cellular connectivity technology on Mattawa’s buses.
The safety program’s management and technology will be covered by the fines collected from stop-arm violations, according to the campaign. BusPatrol will also work closely with local law enforcement and Nipissing-Parry Sound Student Transportation Services, the company that provides busing to schools in the region.