Trials of body worn cameras outside primary schools could come to Harlow

Education / Sun 3rd Oct 2021 at 09:13am

TRIALS of body worn cameras are to take place at two separate crossing patrol sites in Clacton-on-Sea and Basildon.

For a period of 4 weeks from Monday 4th October, School Crossing Patrol Officers at sites in Cloes Lane, Clacton-on-Sea and Whitmore Way, Basildon, will wear body cameras whilst on duty.

The crossings are on busy through roads which serve several nearby schools. This is the first time these School Crossing Patrol Officers have worn a body camera.

Cllr Tony Ball, Essex County Council Cabinet member for Education Excellence, Life Long Learning and Employability, said: “The majority of Essex drivers respect school crossing patrol officers and the safety of the children and families they help to cross the road.

“Unfortunately, there is that very small minority of drivers who are impatient and sometimes even abusive toward the crossing patrols.

“This is utterly unacceptable behaviour. Our School Crossing Patrol Officers are wonderful people, loved by the communities they serve, and who work in rain, wind and snow to keep the children of Essex safe.

“The safety and wellbeing of our School Crossing Patrol Officers, and the safety of children and families they help to cross the road, is of utmost concern to Essex County Council. That is why we are holding trials of body worn cameras on School Crossing Patrol Officers in these locations.”

The trials of the body worn cameras will last for up to 4 weeks and will then be evaluated. 

The law requires drivers to stop when a School Crossing Patrol Officer holds a Stop sign upright. It is an offence under the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 if a driver does not stop when signalled to do so by a School Crossing Patrol Officer. The penalties for not stopping include:

  • a fine of up to £1000
  • three penalty points on your driving licence.

The Transport Act 2000 states that a patrol can stop traffic for any pedestrians and not just for school children or those accompanying a school child.

Adam Pipe, Head of Roads Policing at Essex Police, said: “Keeping Essex roads safe is a top priority for us and we welcome initiatives that help us do that. 

“Everyone uses our roads, whether they are driving, cycling or as a pedestrian crossing the road. To ensure everyone is safe, we would ask drivers to be mindful of their surroundings, reduce their speed near crossings or schools and be courteous towards other road users.”

You can help reduce collisions and casualties and make roads across Essex even safer by reporting instances of poor and dangerous driving.

Find out more at saferessexroads.org/extraeyes/extra-eyes-what-next.

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