While your resolutions for the new year may include eating healthier and being more active, the new Ontario distracted driving laws that have come into effect today may leave you adding "drive safer" to your list of resolutions. Especially considering that the new laws go a step further than the new country-wide laws that were enacted earlier this month.
Earlier in the month, the government of Canada put new driving laws surrounding impaired driving as well as stricter penalties associated with the offences into effect. Though those weren't the only changes that would be coming for Ontario drivers specifically as the provincial government announced that new laws regarding distracted driving would also be brought in at the start of the new year.
The new laws that have taken effect as of today are all apart of Ontario's Cannabis legislation under the Cannabis, Smoke-Free Ontario and Road Safety Statute Law Amendment Act. Though the laws outlined in the bill don't necessarily regard scenarios or offences related to cannabis exclusively.
Highlights of the bill include stricter penalties for distracted driving that include consequences for first offenders. The new law outlines that first offenders will see a 3-day license suspension automatically along with 3 demerit points and a $1000 fine.
Consequences will be even worse for repeat offenders who will automatically have their license suspended for 7 days, will lose 6 demerit points and pay a $2000 fine if they are caught a second time. For drivers who are caught for the third time or more, they will have their license automatically suspended for a month and will have to pay a $3000 fine.
The new laws are officially in effect as of today meaning the next time you consider checking your phone or letting yourself get distracted at the wheel in general, you should definitely think twice. Especially considering that with these new laws in place, Ontario now has the harshest distracting driving laws and penalties for repeat offenders in the country.
To learn more about Ontario's new distracted driving laws you can click here.
Source: CBC News