Austin ISD tracks drivers who ignore school bus warnings

A dangerous practice that could harm your children is happening an average of 60 times a school day across Austin.

That's how often Austin ISD officials say drivers improperly pass school buses.Those numbers came from a pilot program the school district is running involving hidden cameras.

AISD launched the bus stop-arm camera pilot program with three vendors at the end of April. Each vendor is monitoring cameras on 10 buses at each of the district's three terminals, in areas bus drivers observed to have the most violators.

Weekly reports from the vendors show an average of two violations for each of the 30 buses per day.

That adds up to an average of 60 violations each day that bus is on the road.

District leaders say its hard to pinpoint whether drivers don't know the rules, or if they are just ignoring the signs.

It is illegal in Texas to go by a bus with the stop sign engaged, but currently

police must witness it happening in order for a driver to get a ticket.

The pilot program will go through the start of the 2014-2015 school year and into the fall semester.

AISD Police Chief Eric Mendez says it has not and will not cost the district a dime. The pilot program is free, and once tickets are issued violators will assume the cost of the equipment and maintenance.

After the pilot phase is completed, AISD will review the data to determine whether they will ask the city to pass an ordinance allowing police to issue citations to drivers caught on video.


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