The March Break has begun and many people will be hitting the highways this week travelling to hundreds of destinations across Ontario.
The Ontario Provincial Police are reminding people to keep their eyes on the road, as they launch their distracted driving blitz this week (March 12th-18th).
Brad Blair, OPP Deputy Commissioner and Provincial Commander of Traffic Safety and Operational Support explains, “By now, the majority of drivers and passengers have witnessed, had a close call or been involved in a collision with a driver who was texting, talking on their cell phone or engaged in some other form of distraction. Last year, the OPP responded to 8,711 crashes that were linked to driver inattention.”
Distracted drivers were behind 83 road fatalities on OPP-patrolled roads last year. That’s more than speed-related fatalities (75), alcohol and drug-related deaths (46) and deaths with drivers that did not wear a seat belt (49).
If convicted of distracted driving , fully licenced drivers will receive:
- a fine of $400, plus a victim surcharge and court fee, totaling $490 if settled out of court
- a fine of up to $1,000 if you receive a summons or fight your ticket
- three demerit points applied to your driver’s record
- Drivers who endanger others because of any distraction, including hand-held and hands-free devices, may still be charged with Careless Driving under the Highway Traffic Act or even Dangerous Driving under the Criminal Code of Canada. Both charges carry heavy fines and penalties.
Remember, keep your eyes on the road and drive safe and enjoy the March Break
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