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968 buses to be retrofitted with Drive Cam technology to enhance customer and employee security

September 14, 2011

NEWARK, NJThe NJ TRANSIT Board of Directors today approved the purchase of additional bus on-board camera equipment to enhance the overall safety and security of both customers and bus operators.


“Today’s Board action represents a significant investment in security across the State’s bus network,” said Transportation Commissioner and NJ TRANSIT Board Chairman James Simpson.  “By equipping all NJ TRANSIT buses with on-board cameras, we are demonstrating our commitment to enhancing the safety and security of customers and employees alike.” 


“Following a successful pilot program to evaluate the benefits of bus on-board cameras several years ago, NJ TRANSIT decided that all new buses should come equipped with this technology,” said NJ TRANSIT Executive Director James Weinstein.  “The purchase of additional equipment for our existing buses will ensure that all of NJ TRANSIT’s fleet is ultimately outfitted with on-board camera systems.”   


The Board authorized a $2.7 million contract with Drive Cam, Inc. of San Diego, California, for installation of hardware on 968 cruiser buses and a two-year agreement for managed services, including technical support.


NJ TRANSIT currently operates 712 buses equipped with Drive Cam and continues to take delivery of new buses with Drive Cam already installed as standard equipment.  By retrofitting the remainder of its cruiser buses with the on-board camera system, NJ TRANSIT is ensuring that its entire bus fleet will be uniformly equipped with Drive Cam.


Unlike a conventional camera system, Drive Cam records data when triggered by the operator or when triggered by a significant sudden change in “g-force” such as a collision or high-speed maneuver, capturing occurrences both inside and outside the bus. The system offers a considerable cost savings to conventional on-board camera systems and reduces the amount of data that must be stored.


Each time the bus returns into the garage, events recorded by the system are automatically downloaded through a wireless network to a computer server.  As part of the contract, managed services are provided by Drive Cam, who reviews, prioritizes and sends back video data on a daily basis.  The vendor also archives data and provides camera system diagnostics. 


In 2006, NJ TRANSIT began a pilot program to test the Drive Cam system on 74 buses that operate out of Big Tree Garage in Nutley, which serves communities in Essex, Passaic, Bergen and Union counties.  The program was later expanded to include buses out of Newton Avenue Garage in Camden and Washington Township Garage.


In 2007, NJ TRANSIT approved the purchase of 1,145 transit and suburban-style buses equipped with closed-circuit camera systems, marking the first time NJ TRANSIT vehicles are being delivered with closed-circuit cameras as standard equipment.  Delivery of the new buses is expected to be completed in 2014.


Installation of Drive Cam on the 968 existing cruiser buses is expected to be completed next year.




NJ TRANSIT is the nation's largest statewide public transportation system providing more than 895,000 weekday trips on 240 bus routes, three light rail lines and 12 commuter rail lines. It is the third largest transit system in the country with 164 rail stations, 60 light rail stations and more than 19,000 bus stops linking major points in New Jersey, New York and Philadelphia.