What is automated stop-arm enforcement?
School districts around the country are using automated stop-arm enforcement to curb dangerous driving behaviors on school bus routes. A safety camera system is installed on the exterior driver’s side of a school bus. It monitors and detects drivers who illegally pass school buses when the stop-arm is deployed and red lights are displayed, endangering the lives of children as they enter and exit the bus.
Why is this type of photo enforcement needed?
Stop arm photo enforcement is a tool law enforcement can use to protect children from motorists who illegally pass a stopped school bus.
- It serves as a “force multiplier,” allowing local law enforcement to refocus their energies on other high-priority tasks while still ensuring the safety of students who ride Gwinnett school buses.
- It automatically detects violations – no action is needed by the bus driver.
- It serves as a deterrent to breaking the law. The presence of the system itself causes drivers to think twice before passing a school bus.
- It increases awareness about school bus safety in our community. Stop-arm enforcement sparks a vital community conversation about student pedestrians and mindful driving.
How does the safety camera system work?
- External camera systems are installed on the exterior driver’s side of a school bus.
- The camera systems automatically monitor traffic when the bus stop-arm is deployed and red lights are displayed, allowing the bus driver to stay focused on the children.
- The cameras are only triggered to capture data as a vehicle passes the bus while children are entering and exiting.
- This data is reviewed and processed into an evidence file.
- A school resource officer determines whether a violation is warranted.
What kind of data is captured by the safety cameras?
The safety camera systems generate the following data for law enforcement:
- Hi-resolution still images
- Video detailing the incident
- Date, time, and location of each incident
How does the district know which bus routes are problematic?
In many cases, school officials are aware of dangerous bus stops due to past incidents. School bus route analysis is also conducted to assess the frequency of stop-arm passing incidents throughout the community.
How much does this program cost taxpayers?
There is no cost to the school district for this program. The program is fully funded by the violation fines.
Are the cameras always rolling?
No, the cameras are only triggered to capture data of a vehicle as it passes a school bus while the stop arm is deployed and the red lights are displayed.
How much is the fine for illegally passing a school bus?
In Georgia, if a law enforcement official cites a driver for illegally passing a school bus, the fine is up to $1,000, a mandatory court appearance and six points on the driver’s license. Drivers cited through the Gwinnett County School Bus Stop-Arm Program will face a $300 fine for the first offense, $750 for the second offense and $1,000 for a third or greater offense within five years.
What happens if I get a ticket?
You can visit Photo Notice Website to pay the ticket or to view hi-resolution images and video of the violation. To contest a ticket, please contact your local law enforcement agency.