Syracuse (WSYR-TV) - Central New Yorkers will be seeing a lot of extra police around bus stops, school yards, and routes in between starting on Wednesday as another round of Operation Safe Stop enforcement goes into effect.
In addition, drivers may notice a few new tools added to bus drivers’ arsenals, such as side-mounted cameras on the vehicles.
Advocates say school buses are passed illegally some 50,000 times a day in New York State alone.
“That is one of the few constant icons that we have in our communities,” said Peter Mannella of the New York State Association for Pupil Transportation. “That yellow bus says that our kids are safe. And motorists zipping by that are breaking that. They’re breaking that trust that we have with our kids and it’s just not right.”
When a police officer sees a driver pass a stopped school bus – with its lights flashing and its stop sign out – the driver gets a ticket. But if a bus driver sees the infraction, the driver must submit a report complete with a license plate number, make and model of the car, and details such as the exact time of the incident.
According to safety advocates, the cameras would go a long way toward protecting children boarding or exiting buses.