(WJET/WFXP/YourErie.com) — Millcreek Township and its school district released a PSA this week showcasing the new technology outfitted on all student buses used to crack down on illegal passing.
Millcreek Township Supervisor Kim Clear and Millcreek Township School District (MTSD) Assistant Superintendent Trevor Murnock appeared in an announcement explaining the new BusPatrol security cameras outfitted on MTSD school busses along with PA law on stopping for school busses.
The new BusPatrol cameras were outfitted on every school bus prior to the start of the 2023-2024 school year in an effort to reduce the number of drivers illegally passing during stops and improve safety.
The cameras detect the license plates of cars that pass when the bus stops, extends its stop arm and has its lights flashing. The footage is then forwarded to the Millcreek Police Department who would review it before issuing a citation.
In the PSA, Murnock said the district sees multiple violations from multiple buses per day and wants the community to be aware of these changes so they can be more responsible.
“We don’t want any violations or citations, we’re asking the community to be aware and responsible,” Murnock said.
According to BusPatrol, 98% of violators do not repeat offenses.
Pennsylvania law states that motorists must stop at least 10 feet away from school buses that have their red lights flashing and stop arm extended. Motorists must stop when they are behind a bus, meeting the bus or approaching an intersection where a bus is stopped.
A civil fine from BusPatrol for violating the law is $300 while a citation from a police officer can carry a $250 fine along with court costs and a 60-day suspension on one’s driver’s license.
“This supports community safety and showcases that Millcreek is a safe place to live and learn,” said Clear.
MTSD reviewed its bus stops after a 16-year-old McDowell student died in December 2022 after being struck by a car while crossing the street to reach her bus stop. The full PSA can be watched online here.