Drivers need to be more alert when travelling through school zones in the Cowichan Valley.

Since November 8, RCMP officers have been following school buses to see how compliant drivers are when the school bus stop signs are out.

Communications Manager with School District 79, Mike Russell said the numbers are alarming.

“We’re still seeing a huge rash of people completely disregarding these stop signs. “They’re in place to keep our kids safe,” said Russell. “Since November 8th, our bus drivers have recorded 42 incidents of motorists disregarding a school bus stop sign.”

Russell said, “That’s only 18 operational school days, that means more than two a day and we’re getting our operators to look at these incidents as they happen.”

While students need to look both ways before crossing the street, Russell said it’s up to drivers to keep kids safe.

“The onus lies on impatient drivers who continue to put our learners at risk and that’s something I think we should be focusing on,” said Russell. “A kindergarten or grade one kid needs to look both ways before they cross the street, but the onus is on people driving their cars and disregarding these signs.”

The South Cowichan Community Policing Advisory Society has supplied the school district with eleven dashcams that will be installed on buses.

The bus operators will help the RCMP catch some of these drivers who blow through these stop signs.