Crossing patrol gets camera to film school danger drivers

Head teacher Helen Morris crosses the road with pupils, guided by Joan who is wearing the new body camera
Head teacher Helen Morris crosses the road with pupils, guided by Joan who is wearing the new body camera

A school hopes a body camera worn by its crossing patrol lady will encourage inconsiderate motorists to think about their speed.

Summerlea Community Primary in Rustington is the latest school in the county to trial the equipment in a bid to improve safety for pupils and their families.

Assistant head teacher Karla Strong said: “We are hoping that it will make drivers slow and think carefully about their actions on a very busy stretch of Worthing Road.

“Joan, our crossing patrol lady, is a valued member of our community who knows all the children and their families very well.

“On occasions she has been subjected to some near misses and we want to ensure that both she and our families are safe – something our school travel plan team always strives for. We would also like to thank our parent teacher group, Friends of Summerlea School, for funding the camera.”

West Sussex County Council’s school crossing patrol team, working in conjunction with Sussex Police, encourages schools to use body cameras to deter ‘drive-throughs’ and abusive behaviour outside school gates.

The cameras are worn across the chest to capture audio and video of motorists driving dangerously, or being abusive towards patrols as they help children and parents across the road.

If footage is captured of an offence, it is passed to Sussex Police to consider as evidence for possible prosecution.

It is an offence to drive past a school crossing patrol when they are in the road.

If caught, the driver will receive a fine and three points on their licence – the same they would receive for driving through a red light.

West Sussex County Council puts up temporary signs outside the school warning offending motorists they are on camera.

Anyone interested in arranging a camera for a school crossing patrol should contact Louise Bishop on 033022 26744 or email louise.bishop@westsussex.gov.uk