Distracted Driving in Canada

RAC Directors Allan Boyd, VE3AJB (Ontario North/East) and Phil McBride, VA3QR (Ontario South), had a very productive meeting with Ontario Ministry of Transportation (MTO) officials on Wednesday 31st May 2017.

The purpose of the meeting was to consult with industry stakeholders on Ontario's Distracted Driving Law and, specifically, the current five-year exemption for the handheld use of two-way radios set to expire on 1st January 2018. The meeting resulted in a very productive exchange of information.

Allan contacted the MTO in mid-October and asked for an update. An MTO official advised him they have all the materials that were presented to them at their earlier meeting including:

  • a detailed briefing note to the Minister
  • condensed versions of all the legislation from the other provinces in their exemption sections
  • articles on the concentration levels of full duplex versus half-duplex conversations
  • information about Radio Amateurs of Canada and a copy of The Canadian Amateur magazine
  • documents stressing the importance of the use of radios including the Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) program
  • the complete package of all the supporting letters that RAC received on the issue
  • a letter signed by RAC President Glenn MacDonnell, VE3XRA, outlining RAC's position

They advised that a final decision will be announced in a media conference by the Minister of Transportation on the exemption issue prior to the expiry date on 1st January 2018.

RAC will issue a bulletin as soon as we receive any information and we will also post the information here on the RAC website and on the Distracted Driving webpage - http://wp.rac.ca/distracted-driving/

Note: RAC bulletins are sent to members who subscribe to the service by completing the online form - http://wp.rac.ca/rac-notifications/