It's a yellow school bus on the lookout for bad drivers.

Equipped with cameras and a diagnostics system, the bus footage will help Ottawa Police catch drivers who illegally pass school buses that are stopped.

"I have a file from the past month of close to thirty... that have gone through our lights," says Kathleen Both of M.L. Bradley School Bus company.

The pilot project was started by Ottawa councillor Stephen Blais when he heard constant complaints of the road violations. One school bus equipped with the cameras has been doing rounds for the past two weeks.

"When you're talking about passing a stopped school bus you're putting the lives of our children at risk. And it's the type of behaviour that needs to stop," says Blais.

Ottawa Police Sgt. Mark Gatien says one Orleans school bus equipped with cameras would help issue hundreds of tickets a month.

The fine for passing a stopped school bus with flashing lights is $485.

Gatien says the program will change the Ontario Highway Traffic Act to treat school bus footage like red light camera evidence.

“License plate matches the description of the vehicle… here you go, it is cut and dry, a slam dunk,” says Gatien.

Response to the pilot project was strong at the Ottawa transportation committee with some councillors asking if they can use their office budgets to purchase school bus cameras for their wards.

The cost of installing the cameras is about $2000. The pilot project is expected to run from July to December.

With a report from CTV’s John Hua.