Quick Scan

Canadian Road Safety News Digest – April 1-30, 2021

May 14, 2021   |   Categories: Quick Scan

Last Updated on May 14, 2021

New initiative aims to get more students walking, biking to school

April 30, 2021, Windsor Star (WINDSOR, ONTARIO)

Six school communities across three local boards will participate in a pilot project aimed at getting more kids walking, biking, skateboarding or scootering to class.

The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit has received a $60,000 grant for the initiative through the Ontario Active School Travel program.

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Aggressive, Careless Driving Linked to Increase in Motorcycle Deaths This Year

April 30, 2021, KwNow.ca (ORILLIA, ONTARIO)

The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) has already responded to four (4) fatal motorcycle collisions this year and is urging riders and other motorists to avoid contributing to a repeat of last year's tragic motorcycle season.

Last year marked one of the worst riding seasons in more than 10 years, with 42 motorcyclists killed on OPP-patrolled roads. There were 27 fatalities in 2019.

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Why you can't drive on this new, $616M Toronto-area highway

April 29, 2021, CBC News (TORONTO, ONTARIO)

The $616-million extension of Highway 427 near Toronto sits unused and off-limits to drivers amid a legal dispute between the Doug Ford government and the private consortium hired to build it, CBC News has learned.

To the naked eye, the extension appears complete: the lanes are painted, road signs are up. Bridges and off-ramps have been built. Traffic lights are installed.

But the provincial government has told CBC News the highway, built as part of a public-private partnership, can't open due to safety concerns.

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Survey on speed and road safety approved by council

April 29, 2021, Barrie Today (BARRIE, ONTARIO)

Instead of lower speed limits for Barrie drivers, residents will get an online poll asking them what they think about road safety.

City council passed a motion to that effect Monday night with no discussion.

City staff will create an online survey to poll residents on road safety and speed changes in Barrie, for feedback about whether they’re in favour of a city-wide reduction or just a reduction in residential areas. There will also be questions about specific streets of concern with respect to road safety and speeding.

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Recognizing excellence in safe trucking

April 27, 2021, Government of Alberta (EDMONTON, ALBERTA)

PIC is a voluntary commercial truck safety program that promotes safety excellence for commercial truckers and reduces red tape. It recognizes members who demonstrate a strong safety culture and operational excellence in commercial transportation in Alberta. PIC members can receive reduced administrative fees and bypass privileges at most provincial commercial vehicle inspection stations.

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Auto group backs guidelines for partially automated vehicles

April 27, 2021, CTV News (DETROIT, MICHIGAN)

The trade association representing most major automakers is offering guidelines for manufacturers to advertise partially automated driving systems and to make sure drivers are paying attention while using them.

The Alliance for Automotive Innovation says its members support the voluntary principles, which come as two federal agencies increase scrutiny of Tesla's Autopilot diver-assist system after two men were killed in a fiery crash near Houston. Such systems can keep vehicles centred in their lane and a safe distance behind traffic in front of them.

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Insurance Bureau of Canada Statement following Ontario Government's Introduction of MOMS Act

April 26, 2021, Canada Newswire (TORONTO, ONTARIO)

Today the Honourable Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation, introduced legislation to enable provincial oversight of the towing industry in Ontario, as well as to improve overall road safety. Following the announcement of the Moving Ontarians More Safely Act, 2021 (MOMS Act), Kim Donaldson, Vice-President, Ontario, Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC), issued the following statement:

"IBC commends Minister Mulroney and Solicitor General Sylvia Jones for introducing legislation that, if passed, would make roads and highways safer for drivers and tackle the rampant fraud that has driven up their auto insurance rates.

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Tesla Faces Increased Scrutiny After Consumer Reports Discovers Tesla Autopilot Works Without Anyone Behind Wheel

April 24, 2021, TheDeepDive.ca (WASHINGTON, D.C.)

Tesla has been dominating the spotlight this week, albeit not in a positive way. The electric car maker has been the subject of increased scrutiny and threats of regulatory probes, after a Model S was involved in a crash that killed two occupants. Then, in a further blow, Consumer Reports published a bombshell analysis that showed Teslas can in fact, drive themselves with no one present.

On Friday, U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg told reporters that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), alongside the police, are still in the midst of “gathering facts and information” about last week’s fatal wreck involving a Tesla Model S. One of the focal debates surrounding the crash has been whether or not the vehicle was in an automatic driving mode given the victim’s seating at the time of the accident— one which was seated in the passenger seat and the other in the passenger side in the back of the car.

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Minister of Transport proposes noise requirements for hybrid and electric vehicles to protect vulnerable road users

April 23, 2021, Transport Canada (OTTAWA, ONTARIO)

Protecting vulnerable road users is a priority for the Government of Canada, and silence can sometimes pose a safety risk when it comes to hybrid and electrical vehicles. That is why we are taking steps to increase the safety of all road users.

Today, the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra, announced that the Government of Canada will propose amendments to the Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations that all hybrid and electric vehicles produce a minimum level of noise.

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Province Continues to Seek Input on New Traffic Safety Act

April 23, 2021, Government of Nova Scotia (HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA)

Starting today, April 23, Nova Scotians can provide feedback on administrative regulations, the second-to-last phase for input on draft regulations under the new Traffic Safety Act.

The proposed administrative changes are available online for public feedback.

Highlights of this phase include:

  • vehicle seizure impoundment
  • issuing of identification cards and driver licence cards
  • sharing documents, records and information
  • requirements when challenging a decision made by the Registrar or the Motor Vehicle Appeals Board
  • fees

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Spike in drug-related driving charges in Hamilton during COVID-19 pandemic: police

April 23, 2021, CBC News (HAMILTON, ONTARIO)

Hamilton saw fewer crashes and police stops in 2020, but also saw a spike in drug-related driving offences.

A new Hamilton Police Services report shows there was a 94.2 per cent leap in drug-impaired driving, with 134 charges in 2020 compared to 69 in 2019.

It is also the highest number on record as of 2016, which only saw 22 drug-related driving charges, shows a report at the city's police services board on Friday. Drunk driving charges didn't waver much, with 250 charges last year and 243 in 2019.

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Improvements needed to detect cannabis impairment among drivers, study finds

April 22, 2021, CTV News (WINNIPEG, MANITOBA)

Substantial improvements are needed in Canada to detect cannabis impairment among drivers, according to a new review study recently published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

The improvements, the study says, are needed both to ensure public safety and protect the rights of legal cannabis users.

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Saskatchewan police crack down on distracted driving

April 22, 2021, Regina Leader Post (REGINA, SASKATCHEWAN)

SGI’s March Traffic Safety Spotlight revealed many drivers aren’t paying attention.

Last month, police officers around the province issued 685 distracted driving tickets. Of those, 592 were for holding or using a cellphone while driving. The remaining 93 tickets were issued for driving without due care and attention.

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The only law we need for our roads: don't be a [bleep]

April 21, 2021 Driving.ca (TORONTO, ONTARIO)

We only need one law for our roads: don’t be a dick.

The Ministry of Transportation was born in Ontario on January 17, 1916. Ontario’s first car arrived in 1898, but there were no legislated laws for its driver until 1903. That first law? No speeding over the 24 km/r limit. It was the same year 198 licence plates were issued, also now a requirement. The genesis of our road laws was simple: display who you are, and don’t drive too fast.

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Council pushes off local road speed limit decision to special committee

April 19, 2021, Windsor Star (WINDSOR, ONTARIO)

A controversial recommendation to lower the speed limit to 40 km/h on local streets in Windsor has been pushed down the road following a request by Mayor Drew Dilkens the refer the issue to a special committee that will study road safety.  IN a 6-5 vote, council at Monday’s meeting supported the mayor’s request to refer the speed limit issue to the city’s Vision Zero Policy group.

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New Canadian mirror-based technology can check for distracted driving

April 13, 2021, Driving.ca (TORONTO, ONTARIO)

You look in the mirror right now, but in future, your mirror might look back at you. Automotive supplier Magna, based in Ontario, has announced a new Driver Monitoring System that looks for distracted driving.

The system is integrated into the rearview mirror, and uses camera-based technology to monitor the driver. It looks at the head, eye, and body movement, and detects if a driver is distracted and isn’t looking at the road, along with drowsiness or fatigue. It accounts for valid reasons to not look ahead, such as when the driver glances at the side mirrors.

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Bike classes for kids help increase safety, improve health

April 10, 2021, Government of B.C. (VICTORIA, B.C.)

Children in grades four and five will have an opportunity to learn how to safely ride bicycles, as these children and their schools will participate in the spring session of the Everyone Rides Grade 4-5 program.

The Everyone Rides Grade 4-5 program is delivered over two days. Participating schools are on the Lower Mainland, on Vancouver Island and in the southern Interior. The program aims to provide children in grades 4 and 5 with the safety awareness and practical cycling skills to safely ride their bicycles. Two sessions are scheduled for this spring.

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Calgary cyclists speaking out after spike in fatal collisions

April 10, 2021, CTV News (CALGARY, ALBERTA)

On a cool November evening in 2018, Kevin Dalton experienced the shock of a lifetime.

“I was terrified,” he said. “I was not expecting to be able to get up, it was a hit hard enough that I knew immediately lots of parts of me hurt and I was fearful something bad had happened.”

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Magna's Camera-Based Technology Helps Take the "Distracted" Out of Driving

April 6, 2021, Financial Post (TORONTO, ONTARIO)

As distracted driving remains one of the leading causes of vehicle accidents around the world, Magna is combining its expertise in cameras and mirrors to help automakers make roads safer. Magna’s new Driver Monitoring System is an advanced technology that alerts drivers when they take their eyes off the road for too long.

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Impaired driving and legalization of recreational cannabis

April 6, 2021, CMAJ (TORONTO, ONTARIO)

“Don’t drive high.” This is the message that the government of Canada wanted all drivers to take to heart after the legalization of recreational cannabis in October 2018. However, the association between the use of legal recreational cannabis and impaired driving is not clear.

Although cannabis consumption has the potential to substantially impair psychomotor skills and cognitive functions — reducing performance on critical tracking and divided-attention tasks, slowing reaction time and increasing lane weaving — the influence of cannabis on driving tasks varies by individual, dose and methods of consumption, and time since consumption before driving…

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Driver fatigue is a top ranked risk in Ontario’s trucking industry

April 6, 2021, Truck News (TORONTO, ONTARIO)

Road safety authorities and trucking professionals agree that driver fatigue is a top risk in Ontario’s trucking industry.

When it comes to driving, two types of fatigue matter—physical fatigue and mental fatigue. Both reduce a driver’s capability to perform essential driving-related duties.

Physical fatigue can result in longer reaction times and inaccurate or incorrect responses.

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Mississauga Unveils Locations for First Automated Speed Enforcement Cameras

April 5, 2021, Mississauga.ca (MISSISSAUGA, ONTARIO)

Automated Speed Enforcement (ASE) is coming to Mississauga. Earlier today, advance notice signs were installed in two areas of the city to let residents know that ASE cameras will be installed in the coming months. The first two ASE locations are:

  • Ward 5: Morning Star Drive (between Lancaster Avenue and Netherwood Road)
  • Ward 8: Sawmill Valley Drive (between Folkway Drive and Grosvenor Place)

“Like many Ontario municipalities, we continue to see the dangerous effects of speeding on our roadways. As a Vision Zero city, we are serious about getting drivers to slow down and are taking concrete action to make our roads safer for everyone,” said Mayor Bonnie Crombie.

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Canadian Events & Conferences in 2021

City of Surrey Slow Streets Summit

May 27, 2021

Learn more


CARSP/PRI 2021 Joint Virtual Conference

August 22-25, 2021

Learn more