Distracted driving laws and how to remain focused on the roads

Good drivers keep their hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road. Research shows that drivers who use cell phones are four times more likely to be in a collision than drivers who focus on the road. And when drivers take their eyes off the road for more than two seconds – their crash risk doubles.

Ontario’s distracted driving law

In Ontario, it’s against the law to:

  • Operate hand-held communication and electronic entertainment devices while you’re driving.
  • View display screens unrelated to your driving. 

Any device that you do not touch, hold or manipulate while driving, other than to activate or deactivate it. For example: actions such as dialling or scrolling through contacts, or manually programming a GPS device are not allowed.

Fines in Ontario

If you break this law, you could receive:

  • A fine of $225, plus a victim surcharge and court fee, for a total of $280 if settled out of court.
  • A fine of up to $500 if you receive a summons or fight your ticket.

Tips to avoid distraction

There are many simple steps you can take to avoid being distracted while you drive:

  1. Use your cell phone only when you’re parked, or have a passenger take the call.
  2. Let calls go to voicemail.
  3. Turn off your cell phone before you start driving.
  4. Identify and preset your vehicle’s climate control, radio and CD player.
  5. Plan your route and set your GPS before you leave.
  6. When you’re hungry or thirsty, take a break. Don’t eat or drink while you drive.
  7. Avoid other distractions like reading maps, grooming activities and tending to children and pets.

Our lawyers at Harris Law have the experience to get you the compensation you deserve; we’ll even conduct our own investigation to determine who is at fault in the wake of a car accident.

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