YONKERS – Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano announced, starting October 12, school bus stop-arm safety cameras will capture images of vehicles that disregard the school bus stop-arm for the next 30 days as part of the Yonkers Safe Stop program. In the first 30 days, warnings will be issued, and no fines will be assessed. Beginning November 13, registered vehicle owners, whose vehicles are observed passing the school bus while the school bus stop-arm is extended and lights are flashing, will receive a Notice of Liability in the mail.
Yonkers is the only and largest district in Westchester County and the only district among New York’s Big 5 cities to fully implement a school bus stop-arm safety camera program.
“Our obligation is to protect our children at all times, including their transportation to and from school. These stop-arm safety cameras help us enforce the laws of passing a school bus and the warning period will give motorists plenty of time to practice stopping,” said Mayor Spano. “We strongly advise drivers to be alert and to always stop when the school bus stop-arm is extended. It is never okay to put our children in danger and pass a school bus.”
As part of the City’s partnership with Verra Mobility, approximately 250 buses will be equipped with school bus stop-arm safety cameras for this 30-day warning period. Under the law, the fine for passing a school bus ranges from $250 for a first violation, $275 if a second offense occurs within an 18-month period, and $300 for every following offense, if within an 18-month period. The registered owners of vehicles captured illegally passing a stopped school bus with the stop-arm extended and lights flashing are liable for a Notice of Liability. Up to 500 school bus stop-arm safety cameras are expected to be installed on Yonkers school buses by early 2024.
Verra Mobility’s CrossingGuard™ school bus stop-arm enforcement solution provides state-of-the-art stop-arm safety technology to effectively capture stop-arm events. When the stop-arm is deployed, the camera automatically detects vehicles that pass the stopped bus within the enforcement zone. When an event occurs, the cameras record video of the vehicle and capture event images including the vehicle, its license plate, and the extended stop-arm. Violation videos and license plate images are reviewed by a City of Yonkers Parking Violations Bureau technician for approval prior to a warning or Notice of Liability being issued.
The City of Yonkers contracted Verra Mobility to administer its School Bus Safety Program.