DENVILLE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — School bus cameras are keeping a close eye on the roads in Morris County, New Jersey.
As CBS2’s Meg Baker reported, police said there is a problem with drivers speeding, running stop signs, and putting children at risk.READ MORE: Drug Trafficking Ring Shipped Cocaine To New York Inside Children's Lunch Boxes, Investigators Say
Stop means stop, but still, Denville, New Jersey police say not all drivers are obeying the law when it comes to braking for school buses.
“A lot of times, I’ve seen cars pass buses with lights on,” said Janice Frugone of Denville.
“I seem to have received more complaints about people passing stopped school buses in two years than I have over the past 27 years combined,” said Denville police Chief Christopher Wagner.
Video caught some of the flagrant violators who flew by in their vehicles when the school bus stop signs were flashing.
The video was captured on cameras the school district and police department placed on the buses as a way to catch violators, and hopefully deter unsafe driving.
“These are the two cameras – this is the front-facing one, and this is the rear-facing one,” transportation coordinator Dan Cotreau said as he showed Baker the cameras toward the bottom of the exterior of the bus. “The reason they’re this height is to catch license plates – and maybe a little glimpse of the driver.”
Police said the biggest danger is when kids step off the bus and cross in front, thinking they are safe, and then a car speeds around the bus.
Jessica Barnard has four children. She said teaching them to look both ways just is not enough.READ MORE: Nonprofits Now Have New Home In Brooklyn, Thanks To Transformation Of Bedford-Union Armory
“I’ve seen some cars not stop, you know, not doing what they should be doing,” Barnard said. “So we’re are super happy. I talked to the bus driver about it last night.”
But others said the cameras are an invasion of privacy.
“I don’t love the idea of cameras being on me everywhere,” one resident said.
Police have issued dozens of tickets so far.
“If a school bus driver notices a violation, what happens is they come back to the garage, notify the transportation director, fill out a form with a statement,” Chief Wagner said.
Wagner said the camera program is not all about tickets.
“It really is just about keeping kids safe on school buses,” he said.
But sometimes, it takes an extra reminder like a $200 ticket with five points attached to it to slow down.MORE NEWS: Candidate Conversations: Curtis Sliwa
So far, five buses are equipped with the technology, and the school district plans to upgrade other vehicles in the near future.