Red Clay installing cameras on school buses to catch drivers violating traffic laws

NEW CASTLE, Del. (WPVI) -- Cameras have been mounted on 18 buses in the Red Clay Consolidated School District.

The pilot program began in December with just two buses, hoping to stop drivers who illegally pass by stopped buses that have lights flashing and safety arms extended.

In 2018 bus drivers in Delaware reported more 570 incidents of drivers disregarding the safety measures on school buses.

A majority of those happened during the morning commute time frame.

Delaware House bill 111, dubbed "Laura's Law" would allow footage collected from cameras on school buses to be used to issue violations to drivers who disregard traffic laws.

The bill, which was introduced in March 2019, was named after a Red Clay student who was nearly struck by a car while getting on the school bus.

If passed, the law would require buses with the cameras to have signs notifying drivers of the potential fines.

The proposed fines would start at $250 and increase by an additional $250 per offense, not to exceed $750 within a 10-year period.

Districts would also be required to release public service announcements warning drivers that the cameras are in use.

Red Clay transportation manager Kelly Shahan said, "I'll sleep better at night when Laura's Law is enacted and drivers who pass a stopped school bus have a greater chance of being caught and properly fined."

Shahan says since the program started in December, two drivers have been recording going around stopped buses.
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