For nearly two years now we've repeatedly featured blogs pointing out the many examples death and injury caused by the deadly act of texting while driving. We also advised law enforcement professionals that TruCAM is the perfect tool for the difficult task of enforcing anti-texting laws. Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse…it does!
In a feature news story produced by the NBC4 I-TEAM in Southern California, Steve Chauncey a retired Seal Beach, CA Traffic Sergeant used a TruCAM to track and document the egregious acts of texting while driving as well as other serious traffic offenses. What made it particularly unconscionable was the fact these violators were driving tour or shuttle buses literally putting all passengers in harm's way.
Watch How the TruCAM Can Help Reveal Texting While Driving
KNBC-TV in Los Angeles - 11-04-2013
Evidently a record number of tour bus accidents and fatalities have occurred this year. To find out why the I-Team over a three month period w/Chauncey's TruCAM aboard, followed 25 tour buses from six companies across southern California with hidden cameras. What they found during this investigation is that in addition to the pervasive texting while driving incidents, many drivers drove at speeds greater than 80 MPH, talked on cell phones, and blew through red lights. These are supposed to be professionals!
None of the drivers or companies caught was willing to talk about it, but the videos taken by TruCAM and the I-Team's hidden cameras tell the sad story without commentary. In a recent head on collision "Fred Richardson was killed when a tour bus coming from Big Bear lost control on Highway 38 and slammed head-on into Richardson's pickup." When it was revealed the bus had failed inspections on four previous occasions and then ultimately killed Richardson, Brenda Knight Richardson's niece said, "I think it's criminal. I look at it as murder."
I had to ask myself why these blatant violations resulting in fatalities aren't considered vehicular homicide or manslaughter at the very least. I suspect in some cases they are. But these types of crashes are preventable and should carry an appropriate punishment. According to Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, "the U.S. Department of Transportation cites distracted driving as the No. 1 cause of bus accidents."
The number 2 cause for bus accidents according to the U.S. DOT is speeding.
"In September, a bus driving from Seal Beach to a Los Angeles casino was going so fast over the speed limit that it lost control and plowed through a person's front yard, according to the California Highway Patrol. Eight people were injured."
So in addition to speeders, text-ers, aggressive drivers, and the others oblivious to the safety of those sharing the road, we now need to worry about irresponsible bus drivers as well!
The absolute best enforcement tool to mitigate ALL the above is Laser Technology's TruCAM. If your department has yet to test drive one, please call or email us for a practical demonstration; it will save lives!
Read full news article, "Caught on Camera: Tour Bus Drivers Text, Speed and Put Lives at Risk" here.