School crossing patrols across South Tyneside are being issued with body cameras to help improve road safety and crackdown on drivers who fail to stop.

Under the Transport Act 2000, school crossing patrols have the power to stop traffic when wearing their uniform and using the Stop sign.

South Tyneside Council Cllr Ernest Gibson and Mortimer Primary School headteacher Peter Bennett with school crossing patrol staff wearing new body cameras.

Any driver who fails to stop when signalled to do so by a school crossing patrol officer is breaking the law and can be reported to police. This can lead to a fine of up to £1000 and three points on their driving licence.

Crossing patrol staff serve nearby schools at 37 sites across the Borough. Staff will wear the cameras while on duty.

Councillor Ernest Gibson, Lead Member for Transport and Neighbourhoods at South Tyneside Council, said: “Road safety is a key priority for us and we are always looking at what more we can do to reduce the risk to all drivers, passengers, cyclists and pedestrians.

“The majority of drivers respect our school crossing patrol officers and the safety of the children and families they help cross the road on the extremely busy school run.

“However, there is a small minority who are impatient, can be abusive or simply ignore the signal to stop when approaching these areas.

“Vehicles that fail to stop when directed to do so put both our crossing patrol and pedestrians, including school children, at risk. The body cameras will help to record any incidents with the footage passed on to the police to determine whether an offence has been committed.

“Our school crossing patrol officers are loved by the local families they serve and work in all weathers to help keep people safe. We urge drivers to drive slowly and be mindful of their surroundings when approaching crossing patrol points.”

The cameras will also help the Council to monitor driver behaviour at school crossing points while pedestrians are being helped across the road.

The school crossing patrols staff serving the Mortimer Primary School communities are among the first staff members to be issued with body cameras.

Mortimer Primary School Head Teacher, Peter Bennett said: “The Crossing Patrol staff play a vital role in keeping our children safe by supporting the healthy choice of walking to school.

“We hope that the body cameras work to support the crossing patrol team, whilst increasing safety for our pupils and parents, as they make their way to and from school.”

The implementation of body cameras is just one of the ways the Council works to help make journeys safer across South Tyneside, particularly for young people. Officers in the Council’s road safety team deliver activities in schools, helping children to learn how to cross the  road safety, choose routes that ensure they stay as safe as possible and provide Bikeability courses which give school children the skills and confidence to cycle safely.

For further information about road safety in South Tyneside visit