Washington - Transportation Safety—safety equipment: Program Requirement

Area: 
Program Requirement
Policy Type: 
Statute
Summary: 

State law addresses bus safety equipment by authorizing the use of either stop-arm cameras or the installation of school bus seat belts.

Revised Code of Washington 46.63.180 Automated school bus safety cameras—Definition.

(1)  School districts may install and operate automated school bus safety cameras on school buses to be used for the detection of violations of RCW 46.61.370(1) if the use of the cameras is approved by a vote of the school district board of directors. School districts are not required to take school buses out of service if the buses are not equipped with automated school bus safety cameras or functional automated safety cameras. Further, school districts shall be held harmless from and not liable for any criminal or civil liability arising under the provisions of this section.

  • (a)  Automated school bus safety cameras may only take pictures of the vehicle and vehicle license plate and only while an infraction is occurring. The picture must not reveal the face of the driver or of passengers in the vehicle.
  • (b)  A notice of infraction must be mailed to the registered owner of the vehicle within fourteen days of the violation, or to the renter of a vehicle within fourteen days of establishing the renter’s name and address under subsection (2)(a)(i) of this section. The law enforcement officer issuing the notice of infraction shall include a certificate or facsimile of the notice, based upon inspection of photographs, microphotographs, or electronic images produced by an automated school bus safety camera, stating the facts supporting the notice of infraction. This certificate or facsimile is prima facie evidence of the facts contained in it and is admissible in a proceeding charging a violation under this chapter. The photographs, microphotographs, or electronic images evidencing the violation must be available for inspection and admission into evidence in a proceeding to adjudicate the liability for the infraction. A person receiving a notice of infraction based on evidence detected by an automated school bus safety camera may respond to the notice by mail.
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