On September 1st, 2015, the Government of Ontario introduced new and increased fines for drivers and cyclists under Bill 31 – Making Ontario’s Roads Safer Act, but unfortunately there is still some confusion about what exactly has changed.
To clear things up, take a look at the chart below. It goes a great job explaining exactly what has changed with this new legislation.
|Before September 1, 2015||As of September 1, 2015|
|Distracted Driving||$60 – $500 fine||$490* fine and three demerit points; minimum 30-day suspension for novice drivers|
|“Dooring” of cyclists or vehicles||$60 – $500 fine||$365* fine and three demerit points|
|Passing Cyclists||None||Drivers must leave a one-metre distance when passing cyclists or face a $110* fine and two demerit points; $180* fine and two demerit points for failing to leave a one-metre distance when passing cyclists in a community safety zone|
|Improper lighting on a bicycle||$20 set fine||$110* fine|
|Slow Down, Move Over||Slow Down, Move Over|
for emergency vehicles
stopped at roadside to
|Slow Down, Move Over requirement now also includes tow trucks stopped at roadside to assist; $490* fine for violation|
* Fine as listed is set fine including Victim Fine Surcharge and court costs
As part of the updates to this legislation, there are changes coming in 2016 and 2017 as well.
January 1, 2016: Drivers must yield the whole roadway to pedestrians at school crossings and pedestrian crossovers.
Spring 2016: Municipalities will have enhanced ability to charge out-of-province individuals caught by red light cameras.
Fall 2016: New penalties for drug-impaired driving that mirror penalties for alcohol-impaired driving.
Fall 2016: Extending remedial measures and ignition interlock requirements to any accumulation of alcohol/drug impaired driving under the Highway Traffic Act.
Spring 2017: Expansion of licence plate denial for drivers who do not pay Provincial Offences Act fines for offences such as speeding, improper lane changes, illegal turns, driving without insurance and careless driving.
Spring 2017: Extending the Reduced Suspension with Ignition Interlock Conduct Review Program to repeat offenders.