Huron Shores Area Transit (HSAT) recently installed security cameras and updated its Passenger Courtesy, Conduct & Safety policy in a proactive effort to maintain and enhance passenger and driver safety.

Two new security cameras, one for each bus, will focus on the passenger compartment and record video and audio. The buses’ digital recording will be kept for seven days, at which time the system automatically records over the previous recording. If an incident requires action by the Municipality of Lambton Shores or the police, that specific piece of the digital recording can be downloaded, saved and used as necessary for the safety and security of employees, the public and physical property.

“We want to make sure our transit system is safe and welcoming for everyone,” says Susan Mills, Transit Coordinator. Accompanying the installation of the cameras, Lambton Shores updated its Surveillance Policy, which seeks a balance between an individual’s right to privacy while committing to the safety and security of the public, employees, and property. Surveillance technology is used only in a manner compliant with the provisions of the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

Since its launch, HSAT has asked passengers to be courteous of each other and the driver, to allow passengers to exit before boarding, not to take up seating with bags and personal belongings, not to block the aisle, not to smoke and to use headphones when using a personal audio device. Those good manners have expanded to include a list of banned items and behaviour. It might seem obvious, but HSAT has identified illegal drugs, weapons and flammable materials as items passengers cannot bring onboard. Smoking has been clarified to include vaping, e-cigarettes and cannabis.

Banned behaviours include verbal or physical harassment, use of profanity, racial slurs, racial/ethnic name-calling, drinking alcohol or having an open container of alcohol, or causing damage to a vehicle. Drivers may ask offending passengers to leave the bus and/or call for police assistance, and it is possible to be banned from using the bus system altogether. HSAT reminds passengers that drivers watch the road, not the passengers, so if you see dangerous and illegal activity on a bus, call police to report it.