Sentinel Systems delivers safety camera systems for NI school buses

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Vehicle safety specialists Sentinel Systems has provided over 100 camera systems to six different bus builders as part of a new school bus project for the Northern Ireland Education Authority (NIEA). This project is part of a multi-million pound, five-year plan to replace 50% of NIEA’s school bus fleet and maintain a school transport service that is high quality, safe and efficient.

The delays and challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic resulted in NIEA having a reduced timeframe for procuring this first batch of new buses. With the project approved in Q4 2020, over 100 vehicles needed to be procured by the end of the budget year in March 2021.
NIEA said it had been very satisfied with the performance and quality of video images delivered by Sentinel’s solutions supplied under previous procurement contracts, leading it to specify Sentinel’s camera systems again. The new buses and coaches range from 14 to 60-seaters, with the camera systems specified to suit the size of each vehicle and the areas to be monitored.

The systems were installed in the new school buses to provide enhanced all-round exterior visibility for the safety of other road users. An interior camera system was also installed in each vehicle to monitor passenger safety and personal security, including a driver camera with audio. Each system included a 7” AHD colour monitor positioned for safe driver viewing when manoeuvring, and a high-spec, eight-channel DVR featuring GPS for vehicle tracking on video playback.

The project involved Sentinel liaising with six separate bus-builders, and the systems were installed by a mix of Sentinel’s team and partners, with some of the manufacturers also opting to install the systems themselves. For these, Sentinel provided comprehensive planning and technical support. This included the provision of in-depth installation guides and system operation instructions, backed up with live video calls as needed.

A Plaxton Leopard that has been fitted with the new CCTV system. SENTINEL