Ontario’s Distracted Driving Penalties Are About to Get a Whole Lot Stricter

One in 10 fatal crashes in Canada can be attributed to distracted driving. You are 23 times more likely to get in a collision when texting and driving. The economic cost totals $25 billion per year.

And that’s omitting the morbid details.

With those statistics, it’s pretty incredible that we ever allowed distracted driving to be so easy. Well, that’s hopefully about to change.

Tougher penalties for distracted driving will take effect province-wide starting on January 1, 2019. Under the new rules, drivers caught texting, sexting, checking their cryptocurrency holdings, or doing anything else behind the while that would render them distracted (and yes, that includes using your Apple Watch on the road) can be met with the following:

  • A $3,000 fine (on third conviction)
  • Six demerit points (on multiple offences)
  • License suspension for 30 days (on third conviction)

Reasonable! Penalties for first offences will also be harsher. As it stands, offenders can receive a fine up to $1,000 plus three demerit points.

Have you heard of the new Ontario distracted driving rules taking effect January 1 2019? If you are convicted of a…

Posted by Ottawa Police Service – Service de police d'Ottawa on Saturday, June 23, 2018

The new rules received royal assent earlier this year, which is an amusing detail to the story. You can get a full understanding of the current distracted driving laws here.