School buses back on the roads
The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) has investigated 5,619 collisions that involved an inattentive driver so far this year. Tragically, 31 people lost their lives in the collisions and 1,051 of the incidents left people with injuries.
Inattentive drivers continue to pose a serious threat to road users and are linked to the deaths of 738 people on Opppatrolled roads over the past 10 years.
The OPP is forewarning drivers that with children and other students making their way to and from school beginning this week, there will be zero tolerance for drivers who direct anything less than 100% of their attention to driving.
“Some drivers claim to be good multi-taskers behind the wheel and this is how they justify habitual texting, talking on their phone or other distractions while driving. This attitude has contributed to driver inattention being the deadliest behaviour on Opp-patrolled roads for the past five years. To help get the school year off to a safe start, develop a zero tolerance for anyone who claims to be a ‘safe’ distracted driver. There is no such thing and anyone who claims otherwise is a dangerous driver,” said OPP Commissioner JVN Hawkes.
“As children go back to school and streets get busier, drivers are reminded to use extra caution and watch their speed when driving through school zones and crosswalks. Safety is our number one priority. Be mindful of all road users including other vehicles, buses, bikes, pedestrians and little ones getting on and off school buses it’s a good habit to practice year round,” added Michael Tibollo, Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services.
DID YOU KNOW?
Simply holding a cellphone or other electronic device while driving is against the law.
On Jan. 1, 2019, penalties for distracted driving will increase to: a fine of up to $1,000, three demerit points and a three-day driver’s licence suspension.
Also effective Jan. 1, 2019, novice drivers will face the same fines as regular drivers and also face: a 30-day licence suspension for a first conviction; a 90-day licence suspension for a second conviction; and cancellation of your licence and removal from the Graduated Licensing System for a third conviction.
Students are back in classes and school buses are once again on the roads. Always use caution.