Cameras on school buses: could your child be safer?

If a driver sees flashing red lights or the stop sign activated on a school bus, Texas law requires the driver to come to a complete stop.

COLUMBIA, SC (WACH) - A Republican Senate lawmaker is pushing a piece of legislation that he says will make children safer when getting on and off the school bus. Senator Larry Grooms explained his bill Wednesday on the Senate floor. The measure would place cameras on school buses to record drivers who don't stop when the bus has its stop sign arm out.

Videos have surfaced across the nation that show children nearly being hit by cars who ignore or don't see the stop sign and continue driving. Some instances have been fatal.

The problem has some parents concerned about their children riding the school bus.

"Everyday my children ride in the morning and in the afternoon," said Alejandra Zimmerman.

Alejandra and her husband Steve have four children who ride the school bus every day. The Lexington couple's daughter, Yokheved, has seen first-hand when drivers ignore their driver's school bus stop sign.

"She'll honk her horn and she'll yell out the window trying to get their attention, but most of the time they're already gone," said Yokheved.

Senator Groom's bill would fine drivers $250 if they are caught on camera driving through a school bus stop sign.

"We want accountability for people," said Alejandra. "We want people to be responsible drivers."

According to a Federal survey done by the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation services, 549 drivers were counted ignoring the school bus stop signs during a 24-hour period.

The Zimmermans say they support any measure that would deter drivers from ignoring the signs and help keep their children safer.

"It's nerve-racking to see and just to think this could happen to anybody," said Alejandra.

The Senate did not take any action on the measure Wednesday.

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