Road Safety Proposals to Reduce Distracted Driving and Impaired Driving, and to Improve Cyclist Safety, in Ontario
Bill or Act:
Highway Traffic Act
Summary of Proposal:
Ontario has a long history of working to improve road user safety. Legislation, regulation, enforcement and public education need to continually evolve to reflect societal changes and trends, technologies, and scientific knowledge. Since 1999, Ontario has ranked first or second in road safety in North America and we presently rank 3rd in the world (based on the most recently published data). Still, based on the most recently published data, collision statistics show that every 15 hours someone dies in a preventable collision, and every 8 minutes, someone is injured. These collisions impose billions in costs and lost productivity. The human cost to families is incalculable. As a result, MTO recognizes more needs to be done which was the impetus behind Bill 173, Highway Traffic Amendment Act (Keeping Ontario's Roads Safe), 2014.
To supplement the legislative amendments in Bill 173 related to reducing distracted driving and impaired driving and improving cyclist safety, MTO is soliciting public comment on the following complementary regulatory amendments:
1. Distracted Driving:
a. Introducing three (3) demerit points upon conviction for a distracted driving offence.
b. Making a conviction for distracted driving a contravention of the licence condition of a novice driver under the Graduated Licensing System.
2. Impaired Driving:
a. Expanding alcohol education, treatment and monitoring through ignition interlock programs to apply to any drivers who repeatedly drive with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) exceeding any combination of the thresholds set in the HTA.
b. Encourage increased monitoring of drivers repeatedly convicted of impaired driving through an ignition interlock program.
3. Cyclist Safety:
a. Increase the number of demerits applied to a driver's licence upon conviction of a "dooring" offence from two (2) to three (3).
For details on the ministry's proposals, please see the attached. We invite you to submit comments on these proposed regulatory amendments.
An information notice of this proposal has also been posted on the Environmental Registry at the link below.
March 18, 2014
Comments Due Date:
May 2, 2014
Ministry of Transportation
Road Safety Policy Office
Safety Policy and Education Branch
1201 Wilson Avenue
Building "A", Room 212