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Enhancing Road Safety in Ontario


Enhancing Road Safety in Ontario

Ministry of Transportation

Changes to the Making Ontario's Roads Safer Act and subsequent supporting regulatory amendments to the Highway Traffic Act, Provincial Offences Act and Highway 407 East Act include:

Distracted Driving

  • Increasing the current fine range from $60 to $500, to $300 to $1,000
  • Assigning three demerit points upon conviction of a distracted driving offence
  • Adding distracted driving convictions for novice drivers that will result in the following escalating sanctions:

    · First conviction - 30 day suspension

    · Second conviction - 90 day suspension

    · Third conviction - license cancellation i.e. driver must return to the start of the      graduated licensing program.

Alcohol and Drug Impaired Driving

  • Requiring all drivers who repeatedly drive with a blood alcohol concentration exceeding any of the thresholds in the Highway Traffic Act (and/or drug impaired drivers) tocomplete an impaired driving education program, treatment and/or monitoring program
  • Extending the current Reduced Suspension with Ignition Interlock Conduct Review Program to repeat offenders
  • New rules for drug impaired driving that mirror existing sanctions for alcohol-impaired driving such as roadside licence suspensions of three, seven, 30 and 90 days, seven-day vehicle impoundments and remedial education or treatment and monitoring requirements for repeat offenders

Pedestrian and Cyclist Safety

  • Requiring drivers to yield the whole roadway to pedestrians at school crossings and pedestrian crossovers, instead of yielding only half of the roadway
  • Allowing for new pedestrian crossing devices on low-speed and low-volume roads as requested by municipalities
  • Allowing cyclists to use the paved shoulders on unrestricted provincial highways instead of riding in main lanes
  • Allowing municipalities to create contraflow bicycle lanes to provide more direct routes and connectivity. A contraflow bicycle lane flows in the opposite direction of the surrounding lanes on what would otherwise be a one-way street
  • Increasing the fine range for convictions of 'dooring' of cyclists from $60 to $500, to $300 to $1,000 and raising the demerit points from two to three
  • Requiring all drivers to maintain a distance of at least one metre when passing cyclists, where possible
  • Increasing the maximum fine for not using required bicycle lights and other reflectors/reflective material from $20 to a set fine amount that falls in the range of $60 to $500
  • Permitting the use of flashing red lights as a safety feature on bicycles

 Medically Unfit Drivers & Services for Drivers with Medical Conditions

  • Enabling future regulations to:
  • Clarify mandatory and discretionary medical reporting requirements
  • Allow for reporting by additional, qualified medical professionals
  • Allow drivers with medical suspensions to retain their driver's licence card for identification purposes and for when they are eligible to drive again

Truck, Vehicle and Bus Safety   

  • Allowing B-train double-trailer combinations to be extended from 25 metres to 27.5 metres to accommodate  new technologies required to meet air quality and greenhouse gas emissions standards; allow for more comfortable sleeper berths for drivers; and accommodate the use of 'moose bumpers' that help prevent animal strikes to the front of tractors
  • Expanding the current 'Slow Down, Move Over' requirement for motorists beyond only emergency vehicles with red or red and blue flashing lights to include tow trucks that are stopped at roadside incidents while their amber flashing lights are activated
  • Allowing the Motor Vehicle Inspection Station program to move to a contractual model and enable the procurement of a third-party contract administrator
  • Clarifying that school buses are the only buses that can be painted chrome yellow.

Supporting Municipalities

  • Expanding licence plate denial for drivers who do not pay Provincial Offences Act fines for offences such as speeding, improper lane changes, illegal turns, driving without insurance and careless driving
  • Improving municipalities' ability to charge and prosecute individuals from out-of-province who run red lights and fail to stop for school buses

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