Students will return to school in Stokes County on Monday, Aug. 28 and local officials are reminding drivers to be aware of school buses on the road.
“This year we’ll have 80 buses carrying nearly 3,000 students and covering more than 8,000 miles each day to school,” said Stokes County Schools Transportation Director, Brad Lankford. “Safety is our top priority and we ask everyone to help by leaving a little earlier on your commute, slowing down and watching for buses making passenger stops.”
Lankford said school buses are the safest mode of transportation, but students are vulnerable at the bus stop.
“Stokes County Schools have buses equipped with stop arm cameras and extended stop arms. These stop arm cameras are multi-head systems that capture high definition video of the stop arm violation. This video footage is admissible as evidence in court,” he said.
The system records a clear image of the vehicle passing the bus, as well as a shot of the driver’s face and vehicle license tag.
The technology has already aided in prosecutions of several stop arm violations, according to Lankford.
“Be aware that if you run a school bus stop arm and are captured on video, the evidence will be weighted heavily against you leaving you virtually no defense,” he said.
Stokes County Schools also have buses equipped with extended stop arms that are designed to make the bus more visible at bus stops. These stop arms extend out nearly six feet from the bus and have a second stop sign with blinking lights.
“We are always looking for ways to increase safety on our buses and at the bus stops. I’m also a parent and have three children in Stokes County Schools that ride the school bus every day. I’m thankful that we have a veteran group of dedicated bus drivers, technicians and administrators that do their best to keep all our kids safe. We welcome our students back and look forward to a successful and safe school year.”
Amanda Dodson may be reached at 336-813-2426.