School crossing patrols to wear body worn cameras in Harlow

Education / Sat 13th Nov 2021 at 07:29am

Essex County Council launching new four-week trial at additional sites in Rayleigh and Harlow.

SCHOOL Crossing Patrol Officers will wear body worn cameras at two more sites in Essex to monitor drivers’ behaviour near crossings.

For a period of four-weeks from Monday 15th November, School Crossing Patrol Officers in London Road, Rayleigh, and the site for Longwood Primary in Paringdon Road, Harlow, will wear the body cameras whilst on duty.

Last month, Essex County Council issued body worn cameras to school crossing staff in Cloes Lane, Clacton, and Whitmore Way, Basildon, as part of another four-week trial, the first of its kind in Essex. These trials are now complete, with data being evaluated.  

The Rayleigh and Harlow crossings are on busy roads serving nearby schools and information from the two further trials will help assess the success of the body worn cameras.

Cllr Tony Ball, Essex County Council Cabinet member for Education Excellence, Life Long Learning and Employability, said: “We know most drivers are respectful and courteous around school crossings in Essex. However, there is a small minority who are impatient and sometimes even abusive toward the crossing patrols.

“We won’t tolerate this kind of behaviour towards our much-loved School Crossing Patrol Officers, who work tirelessly to keep children across Essex safe.

“We want to make sure we have as much information available to us as possible before evaluating the trial, which is why we’re rolling this out to other parts of Essex. Once this second trial period is complete, we’ll be able to make an informed decision on whether the use of body cameras is necessary at school crossing patrol sites going forward.”

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.

More information on the rules around school crossing patrols can found at www.essex.gov.uk/school-crossing-patrols.

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