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Ontario's Road Safety Record

Archived Backgrounder

Ontario's Road Safety Record


Ministry of Transportation

"MADD Canada applauds the Ontario government for all its tough measures against impaired drivers. The cost of an impaired driving conviction is not worth the risk of consuming alcohol and getting behind the wheel of a motor vehicle"
- Andrew Murie, MADD Canada Chief Executive Officer

"We are very pleased to be affiliated with MTO as a Road Safety Partner. Our Car Seat team in York Region has a very rewarding and productive working relationship with MTO staff, who have been very supportive of our initiatives in educating parents and others regarding child seats over the past five years. Having such a reliable partner is a cornerstone of our Community Service Offering, helping to enhance road safety in our communities."
- Dave Paradis, York Region Executive Director, St. John Ambulance

The McGuinty government has taken action to improve road safety and keep communities and families safe.

Combating Impaired Driving

Recent statistics show that drinking and driving collisions killed 174 people on Ontario roads in 2005. To fight impaired driving, Ontario's tough penalties include:

  • Immediate 90-day driver's licence suspension at the roadside if a driver tests over the legal blood alcohol limit
  • Mandatory alcohol assessment, education or treatment and follow up for convicted drinking drivers
  • Ignition interlock to prevent the car from starting if a convicted drunk driver has taken a drink
  • Taking vehicles away from those who continue to drive while suspended

Putting A Stop To Street Racing

Ontario's tough measures for those who endanger others by speeding excessively or performing stunts on the roads include:

  • Targeting street racing and stunt driving with an immediate seven-day driver's licence suspension and vehicle impoundment at the roadside
  • Increasing the fine for street racing or stunt driving to $10,000, and the minimum fine to $2000, upon conviction
  • Driver's licence suspensions of up to 10 years for a second street- racing conviction. 

Getting Ontario To Buckle Up

Since 2005, the McGuinty government has taken a number of actions to encourage Ontarians to make sure all passengers are safely secured, including:

  • Making booster seats mandatory
  • Requiring that children be transported in child car seats in the vehicles of caregivers, relatives and friends - not just in their parents' vehicle
  • Making sure all passengers sit in a seat with a seatbelt and are properly buckled up - Introducing stiffer penalties for drivers who don't follow these rules, including a fine of $110 and two demerit points.

Higher Standards For Beginner Drivers

Ontario's Beginner Driver Education program is designed to teach novice drivers good driving habits and keep our roads safe including:

  • Curriculum standards that place a stronger focus on improving problem attitudes and behaviours such as aggressive driving and speeding
  • Tough new standards for driving instructors
  • A rigorous monitoring and audit program to ensure schools are meeting Ontario's standards, including the use of "undercover shoppers"

Safer Trucks

Ontario's stringent truck safety laws include the highest fines and sanctions for commercial vehicle offences. Recent initiatives to improve truck safety include: 

  • Introducing legislation to make speed limiter use mandatory to make large trucks safer by capping their maximum speed at 105 kilometres per hour.
  • A restrictive condition on the truck driver Class "A" driver's licence. Effective June 16, 2008, drivers who take their Class "A" road test using smaller vehicles (i.e., a pick-up truck pulling a large recreational trailer) will be restricted to driving vehicles of similar size, and not be licensed to drive a full size tractor-trailer.



Driving and Roads