ENDWELL, NY (WIVT/WBGH) – Broome County held a news conference today to summarize the first year of the Stop Arm Program.
The Stop Arm Program is a statewide initiative to increase safety for students who ride the bus to and from school.
The program equips school buses with cameras attached to the mechanical stop sign arm that extends when dropping off or picking up. This camera records and identifies drivers who ignore the stop sign and pass the bus.
The Chairman of the Broome County Legislature, Daniel Reynolds said that a lot of people assumed that the Stop Arm Program was a waste of resources, and that everybody knows not to pass a stopped bus.
“It doesn’t happen that much. Everybody knows not to pass a school bus, and here we are a year later with three-thousand thirty,” said Reynolds. “We need to do better, the community needs to do better, all of these drivers need to do better. They failed the kids in this community.”
The program has been in effect for a full year, and in that time, there have been 3,030 violations of the law caught on camera.
Those who violated the law are automatically mailed a fine of $250 for the first offense.
New York State regulates the amounts for these fines, but Broome County Executive Jason Garnar said that they are open to much stricter penalties in the future.
Garnar also noted that Broome County was the first upstate county to participate in the Stop Arm Program.