New Rules of the Road

In the News

Major changes to the law will affect all users of roads and highways, including drivers, motorcyclists, cyclists and pedestrians. The changes take effect at different times.

Principle of caution

The changes call for caution towards more vulnerable users of the road. It sets out a hierarchy of users from the largest vehicles (trucks, cars, etc.) to the most vulnerable (cyclists, pedestrians).

Cyclists: no cellphones or headsets

Cellphones, headsets and earphones will be banned for cyclists. Drivers will be allowed to use an earphone in one ear only.

Takes effect on June 30, 2018.

Winter tires: install earlier

You’ll have to install winter tires on your car by December 1 instead of December 15. And they must stay on until March 15.

Takes effect on December 1, 2019.

Drinking and driving: breath screening for life

Repeat offenders of drinking and driving laws will have to keep an ignition interlock device on their cars for life. They can ask for a review after 10 years.

Takes effect: no date set yet.

Bigger Fines

Old Fines

New Fines

Cellphones and driving

  • $80 to $100
  • $300 to $600
  • Possible automatic suspension of driver’s licence

Offences by cyclists

  • Usually $25 to $30
  • Possible demerit points
  • $80 to $100
  • No more demerit points for cyclists

Driving without a seatbelt

  • $80 to $100
  • $200 to $300

Other changes

  • People learning to ride motorcycles will no longer need an accompanying rider (May 18, 2018).
  • Child seats will be mandatory for children up to 9 years old or 145 cm tall (April 18, 2019).
  • Fines will be doubled for speeding in school zones during school hours (August 1, 2019).
  • Pedestrians will have the right of way at pedestrian crossings as soon as they indicate their intention to cross (May 18, 2018). They already have the right of way while crossing at pedestrian crossings.
  • New restrictions will apply to young drivers and to some types of motorcycles. For example, drivers with learner’s licenses will have a curfew and won’t be allowed to drive between midnight and 5 am (May 18, 2018).