Phased installation is now underway of closed-circuit TV (CCTV) cameras on six BC Transit buses in Abbotsford and Mission.
All medium- and heavy-duty buses acquired after 2005 will have the cameras installed, and new buses, 27 feet and longer, will be delivered with the cameras already factory-installed.
BC Transit said it is installing the cameras “to enhance security and safety, including evidence to ensure successful conclusions for security investigations.”
A one-year evaluation program was completed in April 2016 on 83 buses in Victoria and another 25 in Kamloops and showed positive results, according to BC Transit.
Between April 2015 and April 2016, the cameras recorded more than 1,400 incidents, and more than 500 went to full investigation by BC Transit, police and/or ICBC.
These included five assaults on bus drivers (all of which led to convictions) and 61 liability claims, in which BC Transit was found to be fully at fault 19 times, not at fault 40 times, and partially at fault twice.
Cameras were installed on 10 buses in Chilliwack, 41 buses in Kelowna and 24 buses in Nanaimo this year.
The estimated budget to equip the six buses with this new technology is $21,000.
The installation follows infrastructure funding announcements by the federal and provincial governments in June and July of this year.
A timetable to install CCTV cameras throughout the BC Transit system has not yet been confirmed.
For more information on the project, how the cameras will operate, and the results from the 2015-16 pilot project, click here.