A new Ontario law increases the fines for some offences for drivers in the province. Drivers who text while behind the wheel could face a maximum fine of up to $1,000 and gain three demerit points.
Cyclists who do not have proper lights or reflectors could face fines up to $500. The law would also permit the use of red flashing lights on bicycles.
The bill will also allow cyclists to ride on shoulders of provincial highways and it will enable more cities to install contraflow lanes (bicycle lanes that run in the opposite direction of one-way streets). By doing so, the government hopes to encourage more people to ride their bikes.
Drivers who “door” other cyclists and those driving under the influence (impaired under any circumstance) will also face much stiffer fines under Ontario’s new driving laws. The law also prevents skateboarders from hitching a ride from a moving car.
The new law passed third reading Tuesday morning and will soon be signed into law. The new distracted driving penalties rank among the toughest in the world.
[via National Post]