While driving a motor vehicle brings about greater freedom and mobility, one cannot forget the responsibilities that come with such a privilege.  It is important to know the transportation laws that affect us (whether it concerns a car, truck, or motorcycle, etc.), or while commuting to work, school or the long drive to the cottage.  Every driver should know the law as it pertains to the following topics before heading out on the road.

Demerit Points

In Ontario, driving licenses are granted on a graduated class system.  There are currently three classes of licenses:  G1, G2 and G (being the fully licensed driver).  A demerit point is a penalty that this attached to your driver’s license and, depending on the type of class, some drivers are permitted more demerit points than others.  For example, if you are a G1 or G2 driver, then at 9 demerit points your driver’s license will be suspended.  For a fully licensed G driver, suspension occurs at 15 demerit points.  Below is a chart of various driving offences and the demerit points associated with each:

 

DEMERIT POINTS

DRIVING OFFENCE

2

Prohibited turns

2

Failing to obey signs

2

Failing to share the road

2

Improper left turn

2

Unnecessary slow driving

2

Driver failing to wear a seat belt

2

Driver failing to ensure a passenger under 16 year is wearing seat belt

2

Backing on a highway

2

Improper opening of a vehicle door

2

Improper right turn

2

Failing to signal

2

Driver failing to ensure a passenger less than 23 kg is properly secured

2

Driver failing to ensure infant/child is properly secured in an appropriate child restraint system or booster seat

3

Exceeding the speed limit by 16 to 29 km/h

3

Failing to yield the right-of-way

3

Failing to report a collision to a police officer

3

Failing to obey the directions of a police officer

3

Crowding the driver’s seat

3

Driving on a closed road

3

Failing to slow and carefully pass a stopped emergency vehicle

3

Improper passing

3

Driving through, around or under a railway crossing barrier

3

Driving the wrong way on a divided road

3

Failing to obey a stop sign, traffic control stop/slow sign, traffic light or railway crossing signal

3

Going the wrong way on a one-way road

3

Improper use of a high occupancy vehicle lane

3

Failing to move, where possible, into another lane when passing a stopped emergency vehicle

4

Exceeding the speed limit by 30 to 49 km/h

4

Following too closely

5

Driver of a public vehicle or school bus failing to stop at railway crossings

6

Careless Driving

6

Exceeding the speed limit by 50 km/h or more

6

Racing

6

Failing to stop for a school bus

7

Failing to remain at the scene of a collision

7

Failing to stop when signalled/requested by a police officer

 

Impaired Driving

Driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol is a crime under the Criminal Code of Canada. In Ontario, G1, G2 and drivers 21 years of age and under are not permitted to have any alcohol whatsoever if they are in the care and control of a motor vehicle.  For fully licensed G drivers above the age of 21, Blood Alcohol Concentration (“BAC”) of 0.05% to 0.08%, referred to as the “warn range,” can result in a roadside suspension of 3, 7, or 30 days depending on whether the instance is a repeat occurrence.

BAC above 0.08% can result in a criminal conviction, including a fine and/or imprisonment and license suspension.  As of August 3, 2010, drivers convicted for the first time of an impaired driving offence may be eligible to reduce their license suspension from 1 year to 90 days if they meet certain requirements, most notably, the installation of an Ignition Interlock Device.

*Disclaimer:  The information provided in this article is NOT legal advice but fundamental information to be further inquired upon professionally.  You should always consult with a qualified lawyer to obtain proper advice.

Leave a Reply