Ontario Newsroom

Protecting Vulnerable Road Users

Backgrounder

Protecting Vulnerable Road Users

Ministry of Transportation

Ontario intends to introduce legislation to strengthen existing road safety laws and propose new measures to make roads even safer. If passed, the new measures would include:

Distracted Driving

  • Introduce penalties for fully licensed drivers:

Distracted Driving - Fully Licensed Drivers

Current

Proposed

Licence Suspension

Fine

Demerit Points

Licence Suspension

Fine

Demerit Points

First conviction

N/A

$300-$1000

Three demerit points

Three Days

$500 - $1,000

Three demerit points

Second conviction

Seven Days

$500 - $2,000

Six demerit points

Third and subsequent convictions

30 Days

$500 - $3,000

Six demerit points

  • Increase existing fines for novice drivers (G1, G2, M1, and M2):

Distracted Driving - Novice Drivers

Current

Proposed

Licence Suspension

Fine

Demerit Points

Licence Suspension

Fine

Demerit Points

First conviction

30 days

$300-$1000

N/A

No Change

$500 - $1,000

N/A

Second conviction

90 days

$500 - $2,000

Third and subsequent convictions

Cancellation

$500 - $3,000

  • Ensuring drivers are convicted of distracted driving offences as drivers, not vehicle owners, so that all convicted drivers face the same consequences.

Careless Driving

  • Creating a new offence for careless driving causing death or bodily harm.

  • Proposed penalties include:

 

Careless Driving Causing Death or Bodily Harm

Proposed New Offence

Licence Suspension

Fines

Other Penalties

Any occurrence

Not more than 5 years

$2,000 - $50,000

Imprisonment of not more than two years; and 

Six demerit points*

*Demerit points for existing careless driving provision would apply

Emergency and Enforcement Worker, Pedestrian and Cyclist Safety  

Pedestrian Safety

  • Increasing the existing penalties for drivers who fail to yield to pedestrians (i.e. failing to yield to pedestrians at crosswalks, crossovers and school crossings) and introducing escalating fines for drivers who are convicted of multiple pedestrian-related offences within a five-year window:

 

Increased Penalties for Drivers who Fail to Yield to Pedestrians

Current

Proposed

Fine Range

Demerit Points

Fine Range

Demerit Points

First offence

$150 - $500

Three

$300 - $1,000

Four

Second and subsequent offences

$500 - $1,000

Four

  • Increasing the maximum fine under the Highway Traffic Act's (HTA) general penalty provision from $500 to $1,000.

 

Increased General Penalty Provision (HTA)

 

Current Fine Range

Proposed Fine Range

Any offence

$60 - $500

$60 - $1,000

Expanding Blue Flashing Lights

To enhance visibility of emergency and enforcement workers, expanding the use of rear flashing blue lights to include enforcement and emergency vehicles that are currently permitted to use only flashing red lights.


Impaired Driving

Young and Novice Drivers

  • Creating a zero tolerance approach prohibiting young (age 21 and under) and novice (G1, G2, M1, and M2) drivers from having the presence of a drug in their system, as detected by a federally approved oral fluid screening device.

  • Aligning existing zero tolerance for alcohol sanctions for this group with the proposed sanctions for zero tolerance for drugs.

  • The proposed zero tolerance penalties for drugs or alcohol are:

Zero Tolerance (Drugs or Alcohol) - Young and Novice Drivers

Current (Alcohol)

Proposed (Drugs and Alcohol)

Licence Suspension

Monetary Penalty

Other

Licence Suspension

Monetary Penalty*

Other

First occurrence

24 hours

N/A

Other penalties, mandatory education or treatment programs and ignition interlock require-ments may also apply for repeat offenders

Three Days

$250

Remains the same

Second occurrence

24 hours

N/A

Seven Days

$350

Third and subsequent occurrences

24 hours

N/A

30 Days

$450

* AMPs will be in addition to the $198 licence reinstatement fee

Commercial Drivers

  • Creating a zero tolerance approach prohibiting commercial drivers from having the presence of either alcohol and/or drugs in their system, as detected by a federally approved screening device.

  • The proposed penalties are:

Zero Tolerance (Drugs or Alcohol) - Commercial Drivers

Current (Drugs and Alcohol)

Proposed (Drugs and Alcohol)

Licence Suspension

Monetary Penalty

Other

Licence Suspension

Monetary Penalty*

Other

First occurrence

There are currently no zero tolerance rules for Commercial Drivers. 

Existing impaired driving sanctions for all drivers would apply.

Three Days

$250

Other penalties, mandatory education or treatment programs, and ignition interlock requirements may also apply for repeat offenders.

Second occurrence

Three Days

$350

Third and subsequent occurrences

Three Days

$450

* AMPs will be in addition to a $198 licence reinstatement fee

All Drivers

  • Enhancing Ontario's existing penalties by introducing escalating administrative monetary penalties that would apply to all impaired driving sanctions (alcohol and/or drugs).

Drivers found to be in the warn range (BAC between .05 and .08) or drug-impaired drivers who fail a roadside standardized field sobriety test would face:

Impaired Driving (SFST or BAC between .05 - .08) - All Drivers

Current

Proposed

Licence Suspension

Monetary Penalty

Other

Licence Suspension

Monetary Penalty*

Other

First occurrence

Three days

$198

Other penalties, mandatory education or treatment programs, and ignition interlock requirements may also apply for repeat offenders.

Remains the same

$250

Remains the same

Second occurrence

Seven days

$198

$350

Third and subsequent occurrences

30 days

$198

$450

* AMPs will be in addition to pre-existing $198 licence reinstatement fee

  • Alcohol impaired drivers (BAC above 0.08), drug-impaired drivers (as determined by an evaluation from a drug recognition expert) and any drivers who refuse tests under the Criminal Code would face:

Impaired Driving (SFST or BAC between .05 - .08) - All Drivers

Current

Proposed

Licence Suspension

Monetary Penalty

Other

Licence Suspension

Monetary Penalty*

Other

Each occurrence

90 days

$198

Other penalties, mandatory education or treatment programs, and ignition interlock requirements may also apply for repeat offenders.

No change

$550

No change

* AMPs will be in addition to pre-existing $198 licence reinstatement fee

NOTE: Unlike a fine, which is imposed once a driver has pled guilty or been convicted, monetary penalties are provincial administrative sanctions applied at the time of the offence. All AMPs will be in addition to the current $198 licence reinstatement fee.

All drivers suspended under the HTA will be subject to a driver's licence reinstatement fee, which recovers the cost for issuing a new drivers licence after a licence suspension. The current $198 licence reinstatement fee would be applied in addition to administrative monetary penalties.

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