Stop! In The Name of Safety

The District of Sparwood and School District 5 are collaborating on a pilot project to install 2 bus camera systems (buscams) in Sparwood. The buscams will be implemented for the upcoming school year starting in September 2016, one of the first implementations in BC.

The goals are to make drivers aware of stopped school bus laws, to prevent illegal passing incidents from occurring, and to provide evidence for enforcement in coordination with the RCMP. In BC, the fine for passing a stopped school bus with flashing lights and an extended stop sign is $368. These systems capture video and other detailed information that allows for the potential enforcement by the RCMP of illegal passing incidents.

Sparwood Mayor Cal McDougall had the following to say: “Passing stopped school buses is extremely dangerous for the children getting on and off the bus. In Sparwood, one of our primary goals is to ensure the safety of our residents, which we believe that the bus camera system initiative supports.”

SD5 Sparwood Trustee, Bev Bellina agrees. “This better enables our bus drivers to focus their attention on the road and the safety of our children. The Board will monitor the effectiveness of the pilot program in Sparwood and, if successful, discuss future implementation in other SD5 communities.”

Sparwood Council raised concerns this spring with the RCMP about vehicles passing stopped school buses with flashing lights. In response, Sparwood’s Engineering Department identified and proposed the bus camera systems as a solution, and cooperated with the SD5 Operations and RCMP to determine if implementation was feasible before proposing it for the MIA BC Risk Management Grant and approval of Sparwood Council and SD5. The project supports Objective 9.1 of the Official Community Plan to provide
for the efficient and safe movement of people and goods.

News Release (pdf).

For more information, contact:
Danny Dwyer, Director of Engineering, District of Sparwood, 250.425.3839, ddwyer@sparwood.ca.
Rob Norum, Secretary Treasurer, SD5, 250.417.2054, rob.norum@sd5.bc.ca.