Canadian Road Safety News Digest

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March 1, 2017

Ottawa wants tougher national standard for distracted drivers using cellphones (OTTAWA, ONTARIO) Transport Minister Marc Garneau is calling for the creation of a tough national standard to penalize distracted drivers using their cellphones on the road. Garneau said Wednesday that having consistent national rules with stiffer fines and demerit points could address the growing number of incidents. Continue reading this post…  

February 28, 2017

No texting while crossing the street: Montreal proposes new law

Global News (MONTREAL, QUEBEC) The City of Montreal argued, at a public consultation on road safety Monday, that texting while crossing the street is dangerous. It is asking the province to make it illegal. Continue reading this post…

Canadian Motorcycle Students Get Lifesaving Helmet Accessory

Canada Safety Council (OTTAWA, ONTARIO) The Canada Safety Council announced today that all participants at their Canada-wide motorcycle rider training programs will get a custom “Made in Ottawa” lifesaving Medical Data Carrier for their helmets. The Medical Data Carrier is a unique, bilingual, medical Information system that provides critical lifesaving data about the wearer as […]

January 5, 2017

The ‘stiffest’ in Canada: A look at P.E.I.’s new impounding penalties for impaired driving

CBC News (CHARLOTTETOWN, PEI) Police on P.E.I. will soon have new powers to impound vehicles, powers designed to discourage impaired and dangerous driving. “To deal with offenders, who are multiple ones, who it doesn’t seem to matter whether there’s fines or a little bit of jail time or driver licence suspensions,” explained Graham Miner, director […]

January 1, 2017

‘Ellen’s law’: Calls for road safety changes after death of star N.B. cyclist

CTV News (MONCTON, N.B.) Cyclists rallied in Moncton, N.B., Sunday to demand their government make it illegal for vehicles to come within one metre of bicyclists. Some of the roughly 100 demonstrators held up signs demanding “One Metre for Ellen” – a reference to Ellen Watters. Watters was a 28-year-old professional cyclist who died last month after […]

December 20, 2016

‘Safety is job number one,’ says Toronto’s new transportation chief

Toronto Metro (TORONTO, ONTARIO) Toronto’s new transportation chief has a message for drivers: sharing is caring. In her first public appearance since arriving in the city nine days ago, Barbara Gray spoke Tuesday about the need for Toronto’s roadways to work for everyone – whether they’re behind a wheel or not. “If you own a […]

December 14, 2016

Pilot project for new drug-impaired driving test to start soon

Global News (OTTAWA, ONTARIO) Drivers in some jurisdictions may soon find themselves asked by police to volunteer for a saliva test, part of a pilot project aimed at detecting drug-impaired drivers. The federal government, the RCMP and a number of police departments across the country will conduct the experiment to see how well certain roadside […]

November 30, 2016

Zero expectations drive efforts to drastically reduce traffic-related deaths in Canada

Parachute (TORONTO, ONTARIO) Transport-related incidents remain one of the leading causes of injury and death in Canada. Parachute, a national injury prevention charity, wants to reduce these incidents to zero by adopting strategies first introduced in Sweden as Vision Zero. Canada’s Vision Zero Summit, powered by Parachute, brings together an outstanding line up of road […]

November 28, 2016

Driverless cars to hit the road in Ontario early next year

Toronto Star (TORONTO, ONTARIO) Driverless cars are headed for Ontario’s public roads as part of a pilot project the province says puts it in the pole position in Canada’s development of autonomous vehicle technology. After motoring up a test track to a Waterloo press briefing Monday in a self-propelled Lincoln MKZ hybrid sedan nicknamed the […]

November 14, 2016

Marijuana legalization and road safety: CAA-Quebec issues recommendations

Canada Newswire (QUEBEC CITY, QUEBEC) Less than one year from the deadline established by the federal government as part of its plan to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, CAA‑Quebec is endorsing the recommendations made by the Traffic Injury Research Foundation (TIRF) in its study Marijuana & Driving: Policy Implications: we must further our knowledge and […]

November 6, 2016

Calgary a paragon of pedestrian safety, but that’s not enough for some

Calgary Sun (CALGARY, ALBERTA) There’s no safer Canadian city than Calgary, when it comes to traffic. That’s the good news from a city hall that’s struggled to embrace that simple fact in the very recent past, while allowing a false narrative of mass pedestrian mayhem to dominate decision making and influence spending. Continue reading this […]

September 30, 2016

Transport Canada’s actions to improve safety for cyclists and pedestrians on Canada’s roadways

Transport Canada (OTTAWA, ONTARIO) Transport Canada is always looking at ways to improve pedestrian and cyclist safety. The Honourable Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport, recently announced that Transport Canada and the provinces and territories will establish a new task force to discuss safety measures to reduce injuries and fatalities involving cyclists, pedestrians and heavy trucks. […]

September 29, 2016

Many Canadians see self-driving cars as a licence to behave badly: survey

The Globe and Mail (TORONTO, ONTARIO) The image of drivers texting, dozing or sipping a martini while they sit at the wheel and let their autonomous vehicles do all the work prevails among a significant number of Canadians. That’s a troubling finding from a survey of Canadians about self-driving vehicles by the Traffic Injury Research […]

September 28, 2016

Transport ministers won’t commit to criminalizing distracted driving

Global News (TORONTO, ONTARIO) Transport ministers from across Canada seemed to have mixed feelings about the criminalization of distracted driving on Wednesday as they met in Toronto. Quebec’s transport minister, Laurent Lessard, asked Ottawa to consider criminalizing distracted driving last month. Global News used this week’s meeting to ask all Lessard’s provincial counterparts if they would be on board with that. […]

August 30, 2016

Distracted driving deaths on track to double impaired driving fatalities: OPP

Global News (TORONTO, ONTARIO) As officers prepare for a busy Labour Day weekend on the roads, the Ontario Provincial Police said distracted driving-related deaths are on track to double the number of impaired driving-related fatalities this year. The OPP said officers have investigated 38 road deaths as of mid-August where the driver was found to […]

August 25, 2016

Should distracted driving be a criminal offence? Quebec urges Ottawa to consider it

Global News (MONTREAL, QUEBEC) Quebec’s new transport minister wants his federal counterpart Marc Garneau to examine the possibility of making it a criminal offence to use a cellphone while driving. Laurent Lessard raised the issue during a press briefing on Wednesday morning, according to La Presse Canadienne. “Let (Garneau) look at what elements of criminalization […]

July 28, 2016

Self-driving cars could literally reshape the Canadian landscape

AutoFocus (TORONTO, ONTARIO) There’s been some discussion about how autonomous vehicles (AVs) will change the way we drive—but not as much about how they’ll change what we drive on. We look at the future of roads, traffic and infrastructure in the age of self-driving cars …Infrastructure changes won’t happen overnight. “There will likely be a long […]

July 27, 2016

Opinion: Speed limit increases prove deadly, should be reversed

Vancouver Sun (VANCOUVER, BC) …In 2014, the B.C. Transportation Ministry hypothesized that higher speed limits might improve safety. On many highways, the higher speed cars (“85th percentile”) were travelling faster than the speed limit. The ministry thought that by increasing speed limits on these highways, slower cars would speed up but the fastest ones would not, […]

July 14, 2016

Toronto city council approves $52-million boost for road safety

The Globe and Mail (TORONTO, ONTARIO) Toronto City Council backed a $52-million boost for road safety over the next five years, beating back an attempt to speed up the plan and in the process calling for a ban on pedestrians using electronic devices while on the road. The new road-safety plan was approved amid a […]

May 23, 2016

Liberals’ pot plan looks for way to detect and deter drug-impaired driving

CBC News (OTTAWA, ONTARIO) The man tasked with coming up with Canada’s marijuana law has a proposal for dealing with one of the biggest issues facing legalization: prevention of driving under the influence of pot. While police can conduct field sobriety tests if they suspect a driver is impaired by any substance, there is no established […]