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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: January 13, 2017 03:07 PM
From: Representative Angel Cruz
To: All House members
Subject: School Bus Video Monitoring Systems (Former HB 2102)
In the near future, I plan to reintroduce HB 2102 from the 2015-2016 legislative session. This legislation amends the Vehicle Code requiring all school buses to include video monitoring systems by July 1, 2019.

Because of their duty to transport millions of children to and from school each year, school buses are designed with certain safety features including the bright yellow color, the flashing lights and the stop sign. Along with the buses themselves, safety is entrusted with the school bus drivers. While doing an excellent job overall of protecting our children, these safety features and the drivers have limitations where video monitoring systems would be able to help.

Internal cameras provide protection for students and peace of mind for parents by decreasing and even deterring incidences of bullying and other inappropriate behavior between students or, although rare, drivers and students. This type also allows the driver to maintain focus on the road, possibly lessening accidents due to distracted driving. Similarly, external, or outward facing, cameras protect students by helping to identify motorists who illegally pass buses or drive erratically or dangerously. They could also potentially deter vandalism to the bus itself. Furthermore, both internal and external monitoring systems can help school districts and law enforcement appropriately address situations that have occurred or provide evidence when accidents occur.

My legislation provides these safeguards to our students by requiring all school buses to include a video monitoring system that will at a minimum include an internal camera positioned so that every seat can be seen AND an internal camera positioned outward so that the road ahead can be seen, or an external camera. Because external cameras can be damaged by accidents, inclement weather or wear and tear, the option is given for an external or an internal outward facing camera.

Our children spend countless hours traveling to and from school each year. We owe it to them, their parents, the drivers and the schools to make that commute as safe as possible. By joining me in co-sponsoring this legislation, you do so. Thank you in advance for your consideration.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact my Harrisburg office at 717-705-1925.


Introduced as HB744