Protect your “safe driver” record and NEVER drive distracted!
Under the new laws in Ontario, ‘Distracted Drivers’ can be penalized with fines, demerit points and license suspension.
Serious charges also reflect on your insurance costs! Your insurer may withdraw your “safe driver” discount, increase your car insurance rates or even refuse to insure you.
What is distracted driving?
You can be charged for any activity that distracts you from the road while you are in control of a vehicle.
This can include:
- Texting or talking on a hand-held phone
- Holding any handheld device
- Entering a destination on your GPS or phone
These additional actions can also lead to charges for careless or dangerous driving:
- Eating food
- Grooming, applying makeup
- Reading books or maps or watching videos
- Retrieving fallen items from floor
…or anything else that takes your attention from driving safely, even if you stopped or are at a stop sign or traffic light
- Did you know that distracted driving accounts for approximately 25% of all motor vehicle crash fatalities?
What are the penalties for distracted driving?
|1st Offence||Up to $1,000 fine||3 days||3 demerits||3-day suspension|
|2nd Offence||Up to $2,000 fine||7 days||6 demerits||7-day suspension|
|3rd Offence||Up to $3,000 fine||30 days||6 demerits||30-day suspension|
Drivers with a G1 or G2 licence are subject to increased penalties.
The province requires you to attend an interview to defend your license if you accrue 9 demerits or more. A 30-day suspension of your license is mandatory for 15 demerits or more.
For details on Ontario’s distracted driving laws, visit www.ontario.ca/page/distracted-driving
What about my car insurance?
Conviction for distracted driving will appear on your driving record and will certainly affect the rates you pay for auto insurance. Depending on your past record and on your insurer, you may:
- Lose any discounts you receive as “safe driver”
- Pay higher premiums for your current coverage
- Be referred to a “high risk” insurer, requiring significantly higher premiums
If you have any questions or concerns about your auto insurance, simply contact your McTaggart, Armstrong, Dewar & Owen Advisor.