PRINCE GEORGE COUNTY, Md. — BusPatrol announces a new partnership in Maryland with Prince George’s County Public Schools. The School District is the latest to launch a school bus safety program to protect students as they travel to and from school.
As part of the program, 1,216 buses at Prince George’s County have been equipped with safety technology including stop-arm cameras to deter drivers from illegally passing school buses. This has been provided at zero cost to the School Districts or taxpayers, and revenue from citations will be used to fund the installation and maintenance of the technology over a five-year term.
Maryland school districts including Queen Anne, Carroll, and Montgomery Counties are already working with BusPatrol to improve student safety. In total, more than 3,500 Maryland school buses now have access to the technology, protecting an estimated 175,000 students.
According to data from NASDPTS, there are an estimated 17 million stop-arm violations each school year in the US. In Maryland, school bus drivers recorded a total of 3,194 violations in a single day in 2019, as reported in The Baltimore Sun. Every time a driver illegally passes a stopped school bus, they put a child at risk.
The BusPatrol program is the most deployed school bus safety program in the US and is proven to reduce the number of stop-arm violations through education and enforcement. Communities that have implemented a BusPatrol program have seen a 30% reduction in illegal passings of school buses year-on-year.
Speaking about the program, PGCPS Chief Executive Officer Dr. Monica Goldson said: “As operators of one of the largest school bus fleets in the nation, we are constantly exploring new ways to ensure safe and dependable student transportation. The new stop-arm cameras that will capture video of traffic violations are just one way we are leveraging technology to improve student safety both on and off of school buses.”
Jean Souliere, CEO and Founder at BusPatrol, believes the partnerships come at an important time: “School buses have been off roads for several weeks and drivers may have forgotten the importance of school bus safety laws. This makes now the perfect moment to launch school bus safety programs to protect students.
“Our program is proven to change driver behavior and 95% of drivers that are ticketed for passing a school bus never receive a second ticket. We are committed to working with communities across Maryland and the US to improve safety for all students.”
In addition to the program addressing the illegal passing of school buses, the newly acquired smart fleet management solutions include COVID-19 mitigation, sanitization and contact tracing tools to help protect student riders and school bus drivers. Cloud-connected interior cameras and student tracking and management tools such as GPS, RFID-enabled ridership cards, and tablets, will enhance contact tracing procedures for school transportation officials. Additionally, tools for pre- and post- trip bus inspections to ensure COVID-19 sanitization protocols are standardized and verified digitally, making it safer for student riders and school bus drivers.
BusPatrol is a safety technology company with the mission of making the journey to and from school safer for children. BusPatrol’s safety programs change driver behavior and create a culture of awareness and responsibility around school buses. In addition, they provide accessibility for school districts, and municipalities to modernize their entire school bus fleets by outfitting them with the latest stop-arm, route planning and route execution technology.