Toronto police riding TTC to catch distracted drivers

Two week-long traffic blitz aimed at distracted drivers

Distracted driver texting right after starting his car
Toronto man uses his cellular device while starting his car. Vatché Ayvazian/Toronto Observer

Starting this week, Toronto Police are conducting a two-week-long traffic blitz aimed at distracted drivers.

Police will be on high alert for offenders in their patrol cars, public transit, in unmarked vehicles, on bicycles, and on foot looking for drivers holding electronic devices in their hands while driving. Police will also be looking for drivers using cell phones to talk, text or switch playlists, as well as drivers eating and reading while driving.

This “zero tolerance effect campaign” became effective on Jan.1 and it aims to catch people when they least expect it.“Everyone should start taking this seriously,” said officer Neal, going on your phone while driving is dangerous and can potentially hurt someone.”

With Ontario’s new distracted driving laws implemented on Jan. 1, drivers can get a hefty fine if they violate these rules. If it’s your first conviction you can be fined up to $1,000 lose three demerit points as well as getting as well as get three-day suspension.

If it’s your second conviction you will get fined $2,000, lose six demerit points and get a seven-day suspension. Lastly if your third conviction you will be fined as high as $3,000 lose six demerit points and get a 30-day suspension.

The minimum fine for distracted drivers before the new distracted driving law was implemented was $490, and three demerit points.

Some drivers who have received fines in the past for using their cellular devices while driving say they have learned from their mistakes and don’t plan on repeating  them.

“I got fined $350 for texting back in August,” says Scarborough resident Carol, who wouldn’t give her last name. “I know it’s hard but we have to follow the rules.”


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Posted: Jan 15 2019 6:33 pm
Filed under: News