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Improving Road Safety for Winter Driving

Archived News Release

Improving Road Safety for Winter Driving

Ontario Reminds Drivers to Prepare, Plan and Play it Safe This Winter

Ministry of Transportation

With winter already here in some areas of the province, Ontario is reminding drivers to be prepared for challenging driving conditions. 

Follow these simple and important tips to drive safely this winter:

  • Prepare: Keep a winter survival kit in your vehicle and get a maintenance check-up before winter arrives. Consider installing four winter tires for better traction, braking and handling.
  • Plan: Choose your route ahead of time. Check your local weather forecast and road conditions before you leave. Consider postponing your trip if the weather is bad.
  • Play it safe: Each year, about 70,000 collisions occur during winter -- about 30 per cent more than summer. Adjust your driving to current road and weather conditions. Slow down and stay in control. Keep a safe distance from other vehicles, especially snowplows clearing the road.

This winter, the province is working with its contractors to deploy 50 additional pieces of winter maintenance equipment in southern Ontario to clear freeway ramps and shoulders more quickly.

The province is also adding 20 inspectors to provide on-the-ground oversight of contractors during winter storms. This is in addition to the 55 new pieces of winter maintenance equipment deployed last year, predominantly in northern Ontario.

Making it easier and safer to get to where you need to go is part of the government's economic plan for Ontario. The four part plan is building Ontario up by investing in people's talents and skills, building new public infrastructure like roads and transit, creating a dynamic, supportive environment where business thrives, and building a secure savings plan so everyone can afford to retire.

Quick Facts

  • Ontario’s roads are among the safest in North America.
  • More than 1,000 snowplows and salt-sand spreaders are used to fight winter storms on provincial highways.
  • Ontario has 16,900 km of highway and 2,756 bridges that must be maintained during the winter.

Additional Resources


“The safety of our roads is always a top priority and we continue to work closely with our road safety partners to promote safe and responsible winter practices. Driving during the winter can be challenging. We are committed to keeping our highways safe, but it takes time to clear the roads. Please be patient, slow down and drive according to road and weather conditions.”

Steven Del Duca

Minister of Transportation

“Ontario is committed to keeping the highest standards for winter road maintenance. Adding more equipment on the roads and providing additional oversight during storms will help keep our road users safer during the winter.”

Lou Rinaldi

MPP for Northumberland-Quinte West

“Road safety is everyone’s responsibility. Many collisions can be prevented by drivers if they adjust their driving to winter conditions. Always be ready for road and weather conditions to change quickly and when this happens, stay alert and drive accordingly.”

Chief Supt. Chuck Cox

Commander, OPP Highway Safety Division

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