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Province cracking down on distracted drivers

By: Sudbury Northern Life Staff

 | Mar 18, 2014 - 10:15 AM |
Being convicted of distracted driving may net a fine between $300 and $1,000 with three demerit points under proposed legislation by the province. File photo.

Being convicted of distracted driving may net a fine between $300 and $1,000 with three demerit points under proposed legislation by the province. File photo.

Proposed legislation by the province would see fines for distracted driving increased from a range of $60 to $500 to a range of $300 to $1,000 with three demerit points upon conviction.

According to current collision trends, fatalities from distracted driving are forecast to exceed those from drinking and driving by 2016. Drinking and driving fatalities represented close to one quarter of all fatalities annually.

The proposed legislation would build on existing measures Ontario has introduced to improve road safety, including making booster seats mandatory, ensuring every person wears a seatbelt, introducing stiffer penalties for street racing, bringing in tougher impaired driving laws, and banning hand-held devices while driving.

The new legislation would also increase fines for drivers for dooring cyclists to a range of $300 - $1,000 and raising the demerit points from two to three. Right now, the fine is in the range of $60 - $500. Drivers would also be required o maintain a distance of one metre when passing cyclists, and to yield the whole roadway to pedestrians at school crossings and pedestrian crossovers.

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