Bus Stop Arm Camera FAQs

The owner of a motor vehicle that is operated in violation of Section 545.066 of the Texas Transportation Code was found in violation of passing a stopped, camera-enforced school bus displaying the visual signals required by Section 547.701(c) of the Texas Transportation Code.

Failure to pay the civil fine, or to timely request an Administrative Adjudication Hearing, is considered an admission of liability for the school bus stop arm violation and is a waiver of your right to appeal the imposition of the civil fine which will result in the assessment of appropriate civil fines, penalties, and costs. A late payment penalty will incur if you fail to pay the civil fine or request an Administrative Review within 30 days of the issue date of your Notice of Violation.

An arrest warrant may not be issued for failure to timely pay the civil fines, penalties, and costs and that the imposition of the civil penalty may not be recorded on the vehicle owner’s driving record.

Today, parents have enough reasons to worry about their children’s safety—sending them to school should not be one of them. It is illegal and also dangerous for a vehicle to pass a stopped school bus. The goal of the program is to improve safety for students who ride school buses. We are committed to reducing violations, collisions and injuries to keep our community safe.

A school bus violation occurs when a motorist passes a school bus after the school bus has come to a complete stop with its stop-arm extended and lights flashing.

Violations are automatically detected, allowing the bus driver to focus on driving. Photo-enforcement systems serve allow for continuous law enforcement while police officials focus on other high-priority needs. When a school bus stops and alternating red flashing lights are active, drivers must stop.

Bus Stop Arm Camera Overview

Step 1: Cameras are installed at a key location on the exterior of each school bus.

Step 2: When a school bus extends its stop-arm, the system can automatically detect if a vehicle passes the stopped school bus within the enforced zone.

Step 3: If a vehicle passes the school bus, the cameras capture images and video of the violating vehicle.

Step 4: The images show not only the violating vehicle as it passes the school bus, but also the vehicle’s license plate and the school bus’ extended stop arm. The system also records a video of the violating vehicle as further evidence of the violation.

Step 5: Violation data and images are then wirelessly uploaded for validation, processing and notice issuance.

Step 6: A final review of the image and video is conducted by AISD’s law enforcement personnel, who then will approve or reject the violation.

AISD officials worked with Austin ISD Police Department to determine the frequency of illegal stop-arm passing. In many cases, district officials have been made aware of dangerous driving habits that affect the safety of our children as they enter and exit school buses. In the next year, all buses should have stop-arm cameras on AISD regular route buses.

The registered owner of this motor vehicle was photographed passing a stopped school bus, in violation of Chapter 12-1, Article 7 of the Austin City Code: The owner of a motor vehicle that is operated in violation of Section 545.066 of the Texas Transportation Code, as amended, by passing a stopped camera enforced school bus displaying the visual signals required by Section 547.701(c) of the Texas Transportation Code, as amended, commits a civil offense and is liable for a civil fine under this regulation ( https://www.austintexas.gov/resident/city-code).

No, this is a civil penalty. Failure to pay the civil fine, or to timely request an Administrative Adjudication Hearing, is considered an admission of liability for the school bus stop arm violation and is a waiver of your right to appeal the imposition of the civil fine which will result in the assessment of appropriate civil fines, penalties, and costs.

The violation will result in a $300 civil fine. Failure to pay may result in additional fines, penalties, and costs, and may be sent to collections.

Please visit https://www.violationinfo.com and log on with the information provided on the notice, or call 1-866-790-4111. There are also detailed instructions on the back of the notice.

The time period to pay is shown on the front of your notice in the top right corner. There may be a convenience/service fee charged by the banking institution for online and phone payments.

ONLINE: Click the PAY button on the main page.

PHONE: Call 1-866-790-4111, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

MAIL: Mail your check/money order (payable to Austin ISD) in the envelope included with your notice, along with the coupon printed at the bottom. Include the Notice # on your check/money order. Payment mailing address: Austin ISD Police Department, School Bus Stop Arm Safety Program, PO Box 35131, Seattle, WA 98124-5131. Checks returned for Insufficient Funds will result in an NSF fee added to your penalty amount, in addition to any fees charged by your banking institution.

MONEYGRAM: Pay at the nearest CVS Pharmacy or Walmart, or to find a MoneyGram location nearest to you, call 1-800-926-9400 or visit www.moneygram.com/locations. Use receive code 15582. There is a $4.99 convenience fee (fee subject to change).

If you wish to dispute your Notice of Violation, fill out the reverse side of your Notice of Violation and mail it, along with your supporting evidence, to Violation Processing Center, P.O. Box 22091 Tempe, AZ 85285-22091 so that it is received on or before the due date on the front side your Notice of Violation. You may also fax this information to (480) 990-4819 so that it is received on or before the due date on the front side your Notice of Violation. FAILURE TO TIMELY SUBMIT THIS INFORMATION IS A WAIVER OF YOUR RIGHT TO CONTEST YOUR VIOLATION.

Your violation may be administratively reviewed by the Austin ISD Police Department and/or scheduled for a contested hearing before an independent hearing officer. Should the Austin ISD Police Department decide the information you provided does not meet the criteria for a dismissal, you will be automatically scheduled for a hearing before an independent hearing officer.

You may appeal the independent hearing officer's decision on the grounds that he/she exceeded his/her jurisdiction or that the decision was procured by fraud, collusion, or other unlawful means.

To appeal the independent hearing officer's decision, you must deliver your appeal petition and evidence, to "AISD Superintendent Appeal" 4000 S IH-35 Service Rd., Austin, TX 78704, no later than 4:30 p.m. on the twentieth day after the date of your hearing before the independent hearing examiner.

If you are currently scheduled for an in person hearing If you are unable to attend your hearing by appearing in the courtroom, you may request a hearing with the court via a video platform (e.g. Zoom or phone) by following the instructions below within ten (10) days of receipt of your hearing notification letter. In order to have your hearing scheduled for this option, you will need to:

  1. Send an email to Info@ViolationInfo.com;
  2. Include in the subject line of your email the Last Name, First Name, and Notice of Violation # as reflected on the Notice of Violation;
  3. Include in the body of the email the following:
    “My name is [insert your name], and my telephone number is [insert your telephone number]. Please send my log-in credentials for my video hearing concerning Notice of Violation [insert the Notice of Violation Number] to the following email address [insert your preferred email address].”  

YOU MAY NOT PROVIDE THIS INFORMATION BY PHONE.  In response to your email, you will be sent a hearing scheduled letter confirming the date and time of your video hearing, but with "Administrative Hearing By Video" as the location. You will also receive an email with your log-in information for your video hearing prior to the new hearing date and time. Should you have any questions or concerns regarding the equipment you should use for your video hearing, please visit www.ViolationInfo.com. You can find more information about how to use Zoom under the Frequently Asked Questions tab.

By submitting a request and being granted the reschedule, you agree to join the video hearing on your scheduled hearing date and time. If you choose not to appear, you waive the right to contest this citation and must pay the fine in full, before the date of your hearing.

Question 7. I have been scheduled for a video hearing, but I’m uncertain about what equipment I need or how Zoom works.
You do not need to have a Zoom account to participate, but creating an account and learning about how to use Zoom prior to the interview is encouraged. There are training resources available on Zoom’s website, if needed. In order to participate, you must have a camera equipped computer or smartphone.  During the meeting, the camera and audio must be turned on, and you must be visible on camera at all times.  A computer or laptop is preferred, but a smartphone will be acceptable.
Below are the instructions on how to join the Zoom meeting using either a computer or smartphone if you have never used Zoom before. Should you have any questions or concerns regarding the equipment you should use for your virtual hearing, please call 1-866-790-4111.

Joining Zoom Through Your Computer:

  1. Click on the link, or if that doesn’t work, copy and paste the link into your internet browser.   
  2. You can also go to the Zoom website, and enter the Meeting ID and password provided.
  3. Zoom will need to download and install to your computer if you’ve never used Zoom before.   
  4. After installation, it will automatically open. Select “Open Zoom Meeting” in the dialog box.
  5. If you don’t have an account, enter your first and last name when prompted.
  6. Select “Join Meeting”
  7. If you haven’t used Zoom before, it is recommended that you “Test Audio” to ensure you can hear us, and we can hear you.
  8. Test speaker and ensure you hear the song
  9. Test mic by speaking and making sure the blue bar is moving when you talk. If not, make sure you have the right microphone selected (headphones, external mic, etc.)
  10. Ensure you are visible in the preview window, and then select “Join with Computer Audio”
  11. Move cursor to the bottom left corner, and click on “Start Video”.
  12. If your camera is facing the wrong way, hit “Alt+N” on your keyboard.

Joining Zoom Through Your Smartphone:

  1. You will need to download the Zoom app, available on the App Store or Google Play.
  2. You will need to give the Zoom app access to your camera and microphone
  3. You can either open the Zoom app and enter the Meeting ID and Password provided in the invitation, or click the link in the email invite.
  4. Enter your first and last name
  5. Select “Join with Video”, and when prompted, give Zoom access to your microphone.
  6. If you are asked if Zoom would like to send notification, you can select “Don’t Allow”
  7. Select “Call Using Internet Audio”
  8. If your camera is facing the wrong way, touch the screen and tap on the camera icon to flip the camera around.
  9. Orient your phone in “Landscape” mode (lay it on its side) so you can view the questions and board members

DEFINITION OF A SCHOOL BUS ARM VIOLATION

Section 545.066 of the Texas Transportation Code defines the offense of Passing a School Bus as: An operator on a highway, when approaching from either direction a school bus stopped on the highway to receive or discharge a student shall stop before reaching the school bus when the bus is operating a visual signal as required by Section 547.701; and may not proceed until the school bus resumes motion; the operator is signaled by the bus driver to proceed; or the visual signal is no longer actuated. An operator on a highway having separate roadways is not required to stop for a school bus that is on a different roadway; or if on a controlled-access highway, for a school bus that is stopped in a loading zone that is a part of or adjacent to the highway; and where pedestrians are not permitted to cross the roadway.

A highway is considered to have separate roadways only if the highway has roadways separated by an intervening space on which operation of vehicles is not permitted, a physical barrier, or a clearly indicated dividing section constructed to impede vehicular traffic; and a highway is not considered to have separate roadways if the highway has roadways separated only by a left turn lane. Section 541.302(5) of the Texas Transportation Code defines "highway or street" as the width between the boundary lines of a publicly maintained way any part of which is open to the public for vehicular traffic. The below images define what is, and is not, an offense. The vehicles in green are NOT required by law to stop, however the vehicles in red are required to stop.

Two Lane Roadway

When a school bus stops for passengers, ALL traffic from both directions must stop.

Illustration of two-lane roadway
 
Four Lane Roadway, without a median separation

When a school bus stops for passengers, ALL traffic from both directions must stop.

Illustration of four lane roadway, without media separation
 
Divided highway of four lanes or more, with a median separation

When a school bus stops for passengers, only traffic going the SAME direction as the bus must stop.

Illustration of divided highay of four lanes with median separation
 
Roadway with two lanes, four lanes or more, with a center turning lane

When a school bus stops for passengers, ALL traffic from both directions must stop.

Illustration of roadway with four lanes with a center turning lane.


 

QUESTIONS:

If you have any questions, please contact Customer Service at 1-866-790-4111, Monday – Friday between the hours of 6:00 am – 6:00 pm (MST).