Distracted driving laws across Canada, from the harshest to the most lenient

Distracted driving laws across Canada, from the harshest to the most lenient

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But the smartphone isn’t the only thing drivers need to be wary of when trying to remain focussed on the road.  We apologize, but this video has failed to load. tap here to see other videos from our team Try refreshing your browser, or Distracted driving laws across Canada, from the harshest to the most lenient In Canada, the list ofactivities includes eating or drinking, smoking or vaping, operating a GPS, listening to really loud music, talking to passengers, reading a map, grooming, and the new favourite, texting or talking on a mobile device.  But drivers are by no means limited to that list. People can and do find increasingly creative ways to not pay attention while at the wheel. An American politician took heat earlier this year fortaking a Zoom video call while at the wheel, and months earlier a Canadian politician made the mistake of, for example.  

Last night, officers stopped a vehicle who was driving erratically in the 4100 block of Sooke Rd after receiving a complaint from the public. The driver stated she was trying to "take her bra off"... This is distracted driving too! #drivesafely #itcanwait https://t.co/GIJRxTtZ7s pic.twitter.com/jfcouXhXSs— West Shore RCMP (@WestshoreRCMP) March 12, 2021 The point is, we can’t be trusted to resist the call to multitask while driving. That’s why there are strict distracted driving laws and expensive insurance premiums in place to encourage drivers to leave their attention where it belongs, on the road.  Here’s a rundown of the laws around distracted driving in all of Canada’s different provinces and territories. Can you guess which one doesn’t even have a dedicated distracted driving penalty?  More On This Topic Many Canadians who drive distracted think it's safe behaviour: survey New Canadian mirror-based technology can check for distracted driving Ontario is the strictest provincewhen it comes to disciplining those doing more than driving while behind the wheel. The fine for a first offence is $615 to $1,000, 3 demerit points, and a 3-day license suspension. Do it again and it gets increased to $615 to $2,000, 6 points, and a 7-day suspension. On the third or greater offence, penalties ramp up to $615 to $3,000 in fines, 6 points, and a 30-day suspension. Insurance consequences are brutal too, and distracted drivers can face similar penalties to impaired drivers. 

In the prairie province of, distracted driving for a first time will earn a driver a $580 ticket and 4 demerit points. A second gets a $1,400 fine, 4 points, and a 7-day license suspension. A third, $2,100 in fines, 4 points, and a 7-day suspension.  Things are slightlymore affordable in Quebec, but no less legally impeding: a first offence earns a $300-$600 ticket, 5 points, and a 3-day suspension. After that, the French fuzz will up the fine to $600, dock 5 points, and hand out a 7-day license suspension. Strike out and the suspension gets raised to 30 days.  Manitoba discourages distracted drivingwith a simple $672 fine for all offences. The first time around that’s paired with 5 points and a 3-day suspension. A second or more offence earns 5 points and 7 days. 

Things start gentle in the, but get serious quickly. A first distracted driving offence comes with a $365 fine and four demerit points. Two or more tickets can result in a license suspension of 3-12 months! And if you get caught two times or more in three years, your ICBC insurance premium can increase, starting at $1,303 for one conviction and increasing from there. Nova Scotia is literally nickel-and-diming its distracted driverswith a nice round first-offence fine amount of $233.95, which is paired with 4 demerit points. (Are you sure you don’t want to make it 4.25 demerit points, Nova Scotia?) The point deduction remains the same as you re-offend, but the fine goes up to $348.95 for a second time and $578.95 for a third or over. 

by issuing the same five-point demerit and $575-$1,275 fine to all distracted drivers, regardless of how many times they repeat.  Sending a text message while navigating an intersection inAlberta will earn you a $300 fineand three demerit points. That’s it… other than your insurance rate, which can go up by as much as 25 per cent with a distracted ticket.  Over on the east coast, distracted driving in Newfoundland and Labrador is a costly pastime, with first-time offenders facing $300 to $500 in fines and 4 demerit points. Points stay the same, but one repeat offence boosts fines to $500 to $750, while a third could cost $750 to $1,000.  Distracted driving laws inare enforced by a simple $172.50 ticket and three demerit points.  In the, the fine for distracted driving is set at $322 and comes with three demerit points.  Police in thehand out $500 fines and three demerit points to anyone deemed too distracted while driving.  Distracted driving is in no way permitted in, but somehow its legislators haven’t got around to writing in an official penalty against it. Instead, police can issue careless driving fines of $115 for anyone caught not paying proper attention while driving. 

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