JAMES CITY COUNTY — As school districts all over the country get their buses ready for the coming academic year, Williamsburg-James City County (WJCC) school buses will have brand new equipment to help them keep students safe.
More than 150 school buses in the WJCC fleet are now equipped with the BusPatrol 360° Student Safety Platform. The system includes a stop-arm camera which will deter drivers from illegally passing stopped school busses. It also features safety cameras on all sides of the bus, as well as a wide-angle interior camera. School transportation officials will be able to access footage through the program’s cloud software and use it to work with local law enforcement.
“Every time a car passes a stopped school bus, the driver is endangering the lives of our children,” said John Lambusta, WJCC Schools director of transportation. “Data suggests that drivers illegally pass school buses more than 300 times a month in Williamsburg and James City County. It’s time to put the brakes on this reckless behavior.”
Officials are hoping the new equipment will discourage what has become a scary and rampant problem throughout the county. WJCC bus drivers reported more than 2,200 unofficial violations in the community between September 2019 and March 2020.
Another highlight of the BusPatrol system is that it will not cost the WJCC schools anything. The installation and upkeep will be completely funded by drivers who violate the bus stopping laws.
“Williamsburg-James City County Public Schools has taken a proactive step to ensure that students return to school safely this August,” Jean Souliere, CEO and Founder at BusPatrol said. “BusPatrol’s suite of technology is designed to protect students at every moment of their journey to school.”
For more information about laws and penalties regarding school bus stops, check out the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicle’s website.