Failure to stop: Peabody releases 'alarming' stats on drivers illegally passing school buses

A pilot program meant to track the problem of drivers not stopping for school buses in Peabody has resulted in some startling details.

The results show that from September 5, 2023, to May 9, 2024, ten Peabody school buses equipped with stop-arm cameras recorded 3,412 vehicles failing to stop for buses that were stopped to pick up or drop off students, or about 2.3 illegal passes per bus per day.

The pilot is the first of its kind in the state and the company behind the pilot, Bus Patrol, says Peabody has one of the highest rates recorded nationwide for illegal passing of school buses.

Boston 25 first reported on this initiative in October of 20223.

“Parents in Massachusetts need to be aware that illegal school bus passing violations are happening in every city and town,” said Maria Scheri, a concerned parent and founder of S.T.O.P the Operator Passing, an advocacy group campaigning for student transportation safety. “If your child takes the bus to school, there is a good chance that someone is going to be blowing past the red flashing lights and stop sign at some point. State lawmakers need to pay attention to what is happening.”

The district hopes the findings from this stop-arm survey will serve as a compelling case for passing laws that allow for more effective enforcement measures in Massachusetts.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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