7-year-old girl nearly run over by car passing stopped school bus

Surveillance footage shows Joe Carista's 7-year-old daughter getting off the bus as a driver passes, nearly hitting her. (Photo/Video: Joseph Carista)

PITTSTOWN, N.Y. (WRGB) Joe Carista is seen on video waiting for his 7-year-old daughter to get home from school.

But when the bus stops and the second grader skips toward her dad, a blue Jeep tears between the two.

"Normally she usually comes off the bus faster. I mean, another couple of seconds and it could've been a whole different thing," Carista said.

The near-miss was captured by one of Carista's surveillance cameras at his business, Upstate Auto Sales in Pittstown.

The Jeep is seen driving off the road, onto Carista's property, and passing on the right hand side of the stopped bus where children get out.

Carista says it happened so fast, even the bus driver was shocked.

"I don't think he could believe it. He was honking on the horn and yelling out the door," Carista said.

Carista says the driver of the Jeep never stopped.

He says he did call police with a description of the driver, a man in his 40s or 50s, and of the car, a dark blue Jeep Liberty.

Carista says he also called the school district to see if the bus has a camera that might have captured the license plate.

"They told me that there was only cameras on the inside of the bus," Carista said.

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Carista says he hopes that soon, school buses will have cameras on the outside, too, because he doesn't want a close call to ever become a tragedy.

"I would think if all these buses everywhere had cameras front and rear that people wouldn't be doing this anymore because they'd be catching them left and right."

It is illegal to pass a stopped school bus when the red lights are flashing, and Carista says they were.

But still, state officials say about 50,000 cars illegally pass New York school buses every single day.

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