Contact: Thomas Algarin, Director, Communication & Information
770-422-3500 ext. 282
Release July 29, 2013
Marietta City Schools Partners For
School Bus Stop Arm Safety Initiative
School bus safety a top priority district wide
MARIETTA, GA -– Marietta City Schools (MCS) and American Traffic Solutions (ATS) are collaborating to deploy CrossingGuard®, ATS’ new technology to help school districts address the growing problem of illegal passing of stopped school buses that are boarding or disembarking children. In 2011, Georgia passed legislation to permit counties to equip school buses with video cameras to catch drivers who illegally drive by school buses when they stop to pick up or drop off students.
“Thanks to an Interagency Services Agreement between Marietta City Schools and the City of Marietta we were able to engage in this extremely important safety initiative regarding the transportation of children,” said Dr. Emily Lembeck, MCS Superintendent. “We believe, as do many other systems, this will assist in making school bus stops safer as children enter and leave the school bus.”
“The City of Marietta is contracting with ATS to provide traffic signal monitoring. ATS will equip ten additional Marietta City school buses with stop arm cameras bringing the total number of buses with stop arm cameras to twelve. Eventually we plan to have one-third of our bus fleet equipped with this technology to help reduce the number of stop arm violations across the district,” said Mark Lindstrom, MCS Director of Transportation. “On average, each of our buses experiences one stop arm violation each and every school day.”
“It is imperative that drivers are aware of the dangers of illegally passing school buses,” added Lembeck. “Drivers that are not educated on the Georgia School Bus Stop laws unintentionally put students’ lives in danger. Our number one priority is keeping our children safe and this tool will help protect our children as they travel to school.”
The CrossingGuard® school bus arm safety solution, mounts purpose-built cameras on the side of the school bus. When the stop arm is deployed, the camera automatically detects a vehicle illegally passing the stop arm in either direction and captures video of the violation and still images of a vehicle‘s license plate. City of Marietta law enforcement reviews the violation video and license plate images prior to issuing a citation.
In Georgia, the penalty for a first stop-arm violation will warrant the vehicle’s owner a $300 fine for the first violation, a $750 fine for the second, and a third violation in a five-year period will result in a $1,000 fine.
“We are excited about this collaboration between the Marietta Police Department, Marietta City Schools and American Traffic Solutions,” said Marietta Police Chief Dan Flynn. “This new technology will, no doubt, enhance the safety of our roads.”