drivers who ignore school buses which have their stop-arms
extended risk getting caught on camera and incurring a $490
fine thanks to a new initiative being implemented by the
city under it’s Safe Roads program.
Ward councillor Stephen Blais was joined by Mayor Jim
Watson in announcing the city`s latest Safe Roads initiative
to install surveillance cameras on the stop-arms of
six school buses by next September. PHOTO SUPPLIED
to Cumberland Ward councillor Stephen Blais, who has been
pushing for the cameras for the past four years, a set of
four cameras will be installed on the exterior of six different
buses – two immediately and another four in September.
will be connected to a series of sensors which will be activated
when the system detects a vehicle passing the bus when it
is fully stopped. The cameras will record a short video
which will be relayed to a secure server, where members
of the Ottawa Police Traffic Enforcement Services will access
and review the footage to determine if charges should be
is similar to the red light camera program in that the owner
of the vehicle receives the fine regardless of who is driving.
is all about protecting children,” explains Blais. “Many
drivers don’t realize the safety concerns that come with
not stopping for school buses, and that’s something we hope
this program will address.”
joined forces with M.L. Bradley Ltd. in Navan to establish
a stop-arm camera pilot program in 2016 that was called
“I Stop, You Stop”.
the first two months the pro-gram was in place, an average
of five motorists drove by the extended stop-arm with its
flashing red light every day. The number stunned Blais,
who has been lobbying his fellow councillors and city staff
to make the cameras permanent ever since.
of the program will rely on the fact that motorists won’t
know which school buses will have the cameras and which
will not. At least two school buses in the east end will
be equipped with them.
to ensure drivers are attentive and focused on safety every
time they are behind the wheel, and especially when driving
in proximity to school buses,” says Blais, who also announced
the creation of a “Constable Scarecrow” program last week
to combat speeding in school zones.
Scarecrow is actually a life-size, metal cut-out of a police
officer holding a radar gun. The Constable Scarecrow was
used with great success during a two-month pilot project
on Coquitlam, B.C.
Police Service will place scarecrows at two sites -- one
on Portobello Blvd. in the east end and the other on Bridge
Street in Manotick where speeding in school zones has become
a major issue. Each sign costs about $165 and are tamper-resistant
pilot project has shown that this is an extremely cost-effective
way to cut down on speeding in school zones,” says Blais.
story was made possible thanks to the generous support of
our local business partners.)