OKLAHOMA CITY – A bill allowing law enforcement to use cameras on school buses to track down drivers who illegally pass stopped buses went into effect Friday, Nov. 1.
House Bill 1926, by Rep. Dell Kerbs (R-Shawnee) and Sen. Ron Sharp (R-Shawnee) requires a minimum ticket of $100 for drivers who break this law. The law also requires 75% of tickets for this violation be deposited into the newly created Cameras for School Bus Stops Revolving Fund, a grant that schools without video surveillance on buses can apply for in order to purchase the equipment.
“Drivers passing stopped school buses endanger the lives of children loading onto or unloading the bus,” said Kerbs, a former school bus driver. “This is a very serious problem, but unfortunately it’s difficult for our officers to enforce this law. I’m glad school districts across the state will now have the means to install video cameras and hold these reckless drivers accountable. I hope this law will remind Oklahomans on the road to abide by our traffic laws or else face a tough fine.”
“I’m glad this bill has finally become law to help better protect our students. Hopefully, a majority of school districts have been able to install cameras on their buses or are in the process of getting them,” said Sharp. “Unfortunately, drivers don’t always think about the dangerous consequences of passing stopped buses, but this new law will help hold them accountable.”
According to the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services, nearly 84,000 drivers ignore a bus’ stop arm every day.