Fines for drivers caught driving while distracted in Ontario are set to jump to $280 on March 18th.
Considering the number accidents and issues on the roads that are a result of distracted driving, it is no
surprise that a fine increase was announced.
“Distracted driving is cited as a causal factor in 30 to 50 per cent of traffic collisions on Ontario,
but is probably much higher due to under-reporting.”
The current fine for distracted driving in Ontario is $155, meaning that the fine will increase to almost
double its current rate in hope of deterring drivers from being distracted while behind the wheel.
Did you know?
- Most drivers are aware of the fine they face if caught, but did you know there are additional fines and penalties that exist for distracted driving?
- According to the Highway Traffic Act, you could be fined $110 if you are caught watching an entertainment device while driving?
- Additionally, other more serious forms of distracted driving can lead to a careless driving charge. If you are convicted of careless driving you could face fines from $400 to $2,000 and a possible suspension of your driver’s license.
What you need to know about the fine increase
As outlined in the story released by CBC News
, “A ticket for distracted driving in Ontario does not come
with demerit points, although drivers could also face a dangerous driving charge, which includes six
You also risk being fined if you are caught driving with the display screen of a phone, computer, MP3
player or tablet computer visible to the driver. However, this does not apply to GPS screens.
Why the increase?
There is no denying that the $155 fine did not seem to be enough to detract drivers from engaging in
distracted driving behaviours. Even with the current fine in place, people are still guilty of distracted
driving all the time, especially when it comes to using their phone while driving. On an average day all
you have to do is look at the car beside you and there is a good chance you will see someone checking
their phone, especially if you are at a traffic light.
For the safety of all drivers, hopefully the fine increase will make drivers think twice before they pick up
their phone when behind the wheel.
What do you think?
Do you think the fine increase is warranted? Do you think it will help reduce the number of drivers that
engage in distracted driving in Ontario?