Acton-Boxborough school buses are now equipped with surveillance cameras to ensure the safety of your children, to monitor the bus drivers accountability, and to curb bullying.
According to J.D. Head, Acton-Boxborough Facilities & Transportation Director, 30 new buses, leased for the next five years, will feature four monitoring cameras capturing outside traffic activity and inside bus activity. There will be no audio recording from any of the cameras for legal reasons.
"The cameras are a natural trend in technology for the vehicle," said Head. "At least once a day there is some kind of a phone call that comes into the Transportation Department that is in one way or another a he said she said type of event. So what this system does is provides some data points to help get to a more accurate portrayal of the true events."
It's not so much that there is a need to keep track of bullying on the bus more so than there is a need to keep track of traffic complaints, i.e., cars not obeying the stop sign on the buses and speeding.
Aside from monitoring possible deviant behavior from students on the bus, the cameras will monitor the bus drivers actions, such as speed and traffic stops.
"We do want to hold all employees accountable, not that we feel like our drivers are lacking accountability," said Head.
Head said this system will alleviate the amount of efforts from the Transportation Department and the Police Department to investigative complaints.