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Ontario's 'shock and awe' speed laws


According to local media reports, new "safer roads" legislation in Canada's province of Ontario not only comes down hard on drivers exceeding the speed limit by 50 km/hr (30 mph) it's also tough on "stunt driving" such as doing 'wheelies' or 'donuts.'

One police officer predicted a "shock and awe" reaction when the realization of the law's impact hits the street racing community.

When the law came into effect at 12.01 a.m. on September 30 it didn't take long to pull in some culprits. There was lots of warning in the media but 28 drivers were charged the first day. The police had some dramatic examples:

"A young man started crying as his mom's car was impounded," OPP Sgt. Cam Woolley, told the media. Another driver lost the new car he'd just purchased when he was caught at 174 km/h on Highway 401, which has a 100 km/h speed limit. "He only had the car for two days, and the car will be impounded longer than he owned it," Woolley noted. Two drivers had their rental cars impounded, leaving them with an extra week's rental but no car.

However, the law is not just about speeding. Included under the heading of stunt driving: unsafe lane changes, "people slaloming through traffic at high speed", and perhaps even drivers doing wheelies or donuts.

"There's a lot of room for the officer to use their own judgment," Sgt Woolley told the Press. "Anyone driving in a risky manner, driving an unsafe vehicle, driving double the speed limit on wet or icy roads,'' could be risking charges under the new Act.

Apart from the more flagrant driving offences such as racing and doing stunts there could be more mundane ways in which drivers could infract the new laws. For example, one observer pointed out that a driver coming off a motorway with a 100 km/hr speed limit might wind up in a 50km/hr zone without realizing it. However, it is not normal for speed limits to drop so dramatically and there is usually an intermediate speed zone between the two (for example 80 km/hr).

Law resulted from tragedies

Support for the new law was boosted by recent deaths in the province due to high speed driving. In January, 2006, a high-speed driver killed Tahir Khan, a 46-year-old Pakistani immigrant just days away from obtaining his Canadian citizenship. Police said two 18-year-olds were racing in their parents' Mercedes-Benzes through an upscale Toronto neighborhood when Khan’s cab was hit. They alleged the cars hit speeds of up to 140 km/hr (87 mph) in a 50 km/hr (30 mph) zone.

Another alleged case of street racing concluded in a Toronto courtroom on October 3, 2007, when two young drivers were spared jail time following a crash that killed the parents of an 8-yr-old girl.

Rob and Lisa Manchester, aged 46 and 43, died after their vehicle was broadsided as it turned left from a busy street north of the city. They were hit by one of two Hondas that police alleged were racing. Their car was ripped apart by the impact.

Both Hondas had been modified with larger tires and exhausts, lowered suspensions, and were adapted with air intakes that allow the use of high-octane fuel, police said. Local drivers Ruben Rodrigues, 22, and Marco Gasparro, 19, were sentenced October 3.

Justice William Gorewich said he did not believe the drivers were racing when Rodriguez's Honda broadsided the Manchesters' vehicle. He sentenced Rodriguez to a conditional sentence of two years less a day to be served at his home, when he's not working or attending school. Rodriguez was also banned from driving for five years and must perform 150 hours of community service. Police estimated Rodriguez was driving 20 to 32 km/hr hour over the speed limit when he hit the Manchesters.

Gasparro pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and received two years probation, a fine of $2,000 and 100 hours of community service. He was banned from driving for 18 months.

Sgt. Dave Mitchell of York Regional Police said he was "disappointed" by the sentences since the two drivers had been driving faster than other traffic and weaving in and out for several kilometers. Under the new street racing law the sentence would have been different, Mitchell believed.

A number of jurisdictions in the U.S. have administrative license suspensions and vehicle impoundment laws. However, they are normally associated with drinking/driving laws.

More vehicle impoundment laws

Jurisdictions are increasingly turning to impoundment as a preventative measure because studies show it's effective. MADD cites studies showing that 50 – 75% of DUI offenders continue to drive without a license during their suspension/revocation period and "over 60 percent of third-time offenders who have their license suspended or revoked commit some form of traffic violation during their suspension/revocation period.

When vehicles are impounded, repeat offences are reduced. "In Ohio," says MADD, "even two years after the sanction period, those drivers who had had their vehicles impounded still had at least 35 percent fewer DUIs compared with those who had not."End of Article

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All Comments (40)

Showing 1 - 40 comments

finncat,

my daughter has been driving for 4 yrs and today failed her g test after a very rude examiner told her within 30 sec that she was an unsafe driver because they had immediately entered a school zone.. she was driving 42=45 km per hr...no warnings or information givenn at this time or even prior, I found out she continued to raise her voice and criticize while my daughter cried in shock and disbief. Never has had a traffic violation and drives daily. The examiner lied on the report stating she gave 2 warnings. How does she get away with this....she was angry from the first meeting and was seemingly going to take it out on a vulnerable soul-why?because no one would doubt or question the examiner..where is it posted that the 5km oover ruled changed 48 hrs ago?

shawn,

This is why more people leave Ontario on a daily basis. Too much police precence. Too many rules,high insurance,property taxes. Roided out cops who love brandishing their infeariority complexes. Ontario is a ********

Magicman,

This law is a do as I say not as I do classic! So now I can't lift my ass up off the seat on my bike to rearrange my seat position as that would constitute street racing! Have any of these idiots ever even driven a motorcycle? They must have their head shoved up that part off their anatomy so far that the ears are covered as they sure aren't listening to reason!

shawn,

Maybe if you little idiots drove like a white man instead of thinking your Vin Diesel....none of us would have to deal with this,since are province already has too many cops to begin with

Glen,

I was just coming from the YMCA and had a coffee with me I have a nice 540i. I got to the lights and beside me was a 1960 car that was slow I pulled in front of him then changed to my lane again so I could be clear of the pack I wasn't speeding the only thing wrong didn't signal it would have been hard for me to do that I also live with a broken neck. This cop car turns on the street then comes after me so I stop. the first thing he says is tell me why I shouldn't take your car? I said I just changed lanes OK I'm taking your car say goodbye! then I say for what? you terrorized those people! I said how I just changed my lane choice.No you failed to signal are you calling me a lair? I'll take your car! You say what I want or you can kiss your car goodbye! and every time I kissed his bottom he would say OK I'm going to give you 2 tickets then and I would say thanks. then he would say oh I'm going to tow your car I've changed my mined you just don't belong on the street!he did this over and over until I was crying then he had a second car come and wright the tickets and told me to get out and then they just searched my car without my permission I think if I said something I would lose my car. I spend 3/4 of my life sleeping and get up maybe after sleeping 3 days to go shower at the YMCA and get a coffee.He lied about everything didn't even know the cars that were around me when I changed lanes. Is it such a bad crime to not turn with signal?I can still hear I'll take your car! must of said that 30 times!I really don't want to drive anymore when I see a police car now I think I will stop and ask if they want to search my car trunk pants may I should go home and let them look! I was told to tell them I have a broken neck and my heart can go crazy from it and I passed a driving test and no cuffs behind me and no stun gun.can't bend my neck very much could kill me if I do.maybe I was happy that day and felt like changing lanes but didn't have the strength to hit the flasher right then. I'm sorry the only thing I have is a nice drive when I can manage it.

Street Racing,

As many people have stated, i also agree that something needs to be done to help stop street racing, but giving the officers this much power is rediculous. my father, who normally drives 10 over the limit at all times, happened to be passing a swerving vehicle to get out of harms way and he was the one that the officer pulled over. he impounded the car which happened to be our only family car. my mother had no way to take my sister to daycare every day or to get to work! as a lower income family this was detrimental to us and we could barely afford to keep the heat on in the middle of winter! does this sound fair?

a family member was nice enough to help hire a company to fight this ticket for us. we hired tafficticketsolutions.ca and they did get the ticket eliminated from my dad's record. but either way we were still stuck with the towing and impoundment fees wich was around $1000...we are still paying our family back now for this injust system....

DH,

cops have too much power..was stopped the other day because I swerved on the road (was texting - have to admit) -- anyway lesson learned there -- and today it isn't against the law. Somebody called me in as possibly drunk...cop followed me for 3km (he said) and said i was driving fine..asked me if I had anything to drink..I had just been golfin and had had 4 beer - he asked me again and agin - i kept saying four. he cuffed me took me back to the station put me in jail - had me blow.. I was fine. At this stage my car had been impounded adn the called a cab to for me to go spend hundreds to get it out...!!! wtf? can they just do this?

tony montana,

This is probably the dumbest rule i have ever witnessed. The police has to much power and they are annoying and the law gets for f ed up every year. come on where is the freedom

L,

Yes, there are some corrupt and potentially now so competent police officers out there. But there are also stupid waitresses, cooks, tellers, bus drivers, parking officers, and yes there are some stupid and inconvenient laws.
But, why is it so hard for you people to follow the law? The laws are there for our own good, you dont go around stealing a pack of gum and complaining that it's only worth $1.50 what's the big deal? People piss other people off everyday, they just dont cost you 7 days of public transit and $10,000.
Maybe the government is trying to make a bit of money, what government isn't? But hey, some police officers do take into account that you're passing and w/e, if they're nice and you dont piss them off. If you get fined and etc for going 130 on the highway and everyone else is going 125 and you're just passing, the police officer is going by the book. They are doing their job, you were going 30km over the speed limit, you are getting a ticket, too bad so sad. You break the law, no matter how trivial it may seem and you could get caught. It's just your unlucky day that there happens to be a cop there to catch you.
Stop bashing the police, Toronto would be a lot worse than it already is without the law on our side. Personally, I like to know that I can call somebody if I'm getting killed, if I'm lost, if my car brakes down. Statistics and logistics may work against us sometimes, but law is the law and a case is the case. "I dont feel like convicting you of murder because you're such a great guy and you were just really pissed off because you were late for a wedding."
Seriously people, have some respect in our forefathers, just dont be dorks and follow the law, follow the drivers around you. Dont got faster or slower. If you dont stand out, you wont be taken in.

-L

surfguard,

Today in Peel region, a justice of the peace ruled the law was constitutional. A conviction was registered for the speeding charge.
$3500
6 month d/l suspension

paul,

while i was out with my wife driving a 2006 z06 corvette the light turned yellow and i sped up obviously fast enough no red light involved at all. a police officer was at the intersection and proceeded to turn on his lights and come after me of which there was no chase i didnt go to far `about 500 feet when he came to the car he went crazy asking what kind of tow truck does this car need also you dont need another car to get charged with street racing he said i love your car but you cant drive over 100k on the street ya do the math mr. officer so do you think the officer acted in a proper fashion well im not finnshed another cop car showed up to make sure i guess and to boot etf unmarked van came by you see the officer was about 175lbs 5ft 8 but i am 270lbs 54inch chest 5ft 8 and i made no gestures or outbursts you tell me this is just by the way i have had 3 series of vette over the time period from 98 to now no tickets at all this guy was jealous and ignorant he even forgot to give back my ownership so ya i think this law went right to his head the people that cause these terrible crashes are i will give you a clue while driving in the winter plowing business in the snow i get passed by a girl at 2 am in dangerous conditions doing about 150km per hour ya ponder over that for a while the officer cant because he is sleeping my vette is stored for the winter later o by the way i am 46yrs old i worked for this baby

tung,

We should stand against the government and next time select better candidates who represents us and solve our problems not create more problems in our life and trouble us.

Haw,

I just hate this law.Its not for peoples safety but its for creating more trouble for people living in ontario.
The purpose of the law was to reduce the extreme careless driving that can cause deaths.It does reduce it but creates more trouble for the people with clean driving record.
I would say that driving itself is a risk and about losing life, r u sure that when you drive a car you would reach safe and your car's tyre would not come off or your brakes will not fail.There is always a ratio of risk and safetly involved in driving.I have been driving in ontario for past 5 years and I have come across the situations where you have to increase your speed to 130 to 140 to change a lane because mostly people are driving at 120km/hr.
There is another argument against stunt driving law that IS STUNT DRVING MORE DANGEROUS OR DRINK DRIVING.I am sure drunk driving is more dangerous than driving with speed 50km/hr the posted on highways.This law should only be for the streets or places which are more crouded, because technically and mostly we save more accidents on highways by speeding than we come accross accidents.
Ofcourse driving at 50KM/hr more speed than posted in school zone or streets is really dangerous.GOVERNMENT HAS JUST USED STREET SPEEDY DRIVING A WAY OF MAKING MORE MONEY.

Tony s.,

The street is not the place for racing , the track is , you want to take your life ,so do so on the track , not on the streets .

Walter,

Hey Zuzu,

50 over the 100 limit is a lot! OK your life is a bit of a temporary mess but there are families out there who have lost members forever because of this kind of extreme speeding -- Oh and the truck doing 130 is not an excuse.

bob hanes worth,

I can't even imagine

zuzu,

I am yet another person who is against this legislation and if my reason is just enough tell me if there is. I have lived in Canda for 3 years now and am working for a reputed bank. I have had my license here for over a year and have a total of driving expereince since 2003. I have had no tickets at all anywhere till this first street racing charge. Now I was caught two hours away from where I lived and I was driving 5 hours away. The reason I was speeding was to cross a truck doing 130 (have u seen that craziness). My car got impounded and the officers left me at a tim hortons and I thanked them for the ride. Waited out 6 hours till I could get the first bus to go back. I have till date already payed $850 to get my car out. Now here is where it gets intresting. If I go to court and get convicted, not only do I have to pay the fine but I get a criminal record. Which means that I loose my Job, I have a canadian citizenship test coming up for which I wouldn't be eligible for and I will have to pay fine. Will I still want to live in Canada if that happens. I am a honest hard worker and agree that at some part I was wrong but punishment is one thing but ruining my life is another.

Pete,

I saw OPP officers greet each other with a heil the other day...the fact of the matter is this, speeding doesnt kill people, well I'm sure that it does however as stated throughout this whole forum is that there are many other factors that do a lot more damage on our roads then speeding. Not just the 150 and over laws, but the crackdown on all speeds. I had a tractor trailer drop ice off his back onto my windshield and crack it...so i pulled out to pass him going 131 and of course, a swine sitting in his car radaring through the glass...i mean it is -20 outside so god forbid he get out and do his job right. After explaining to him what had happened, he returned and said i clocked you at 131 heres your ticket for 131. Wonderful, now its 4 points and 200 and something dollars. Because of this and a less than three second stop at a stop sign violation i have had my license suspended for 60 days. I drive non-stop about 100k a year, without an accident, reckless/careless driving, dui's none of that stuff and for some reason I now have no way to get to work/school. Wonderful so I'm now screwed cause i had my windshield smashed...cops are stupid, fact of the matter is if you prove to smart you are veared away from being a cop...and now with this the power just goes to there heads. It isn't fair that a 20 year old has his life snagged away because of such small insignificant events. If this is the only way the government can get money, then im going to say what ive been saying for years and that is the government of canada and the opp is an absolute joke, they think they make a difference but they dont do anything. And that nice little lupehole in the highway traffic act that cop cars can do whatever speed they want. So im endangering lives when i go 130, however a cop just crusing at 160 is doing no harm to anybody...because hes a cop, nobodys above the law my ass. Nobody is really in the right to tell me or others with storeis like this that were wrong, because until your put in the position of being fucked by the country you live in then dont talk. I mean i get nothing but shit all the time because i am a "young driver". I've never hurt anybody driving, or even come close for that matter, yet i pay 500+ a month insurance cause I'm a liability. The government needs to clue in that the system doesn't work.

Nigel,

Petition to Revise Ontario Street Racing Legislation:

http://www.petitiononline.com/civil013/petition.html

Remember, it's not just about speeding! This legislation is full of vague and ill-defined violations that are open to far too much interpretation by a police officer.

Anthony,

The problem with this law is they aren't catching the street racers with it which was the orginal idea.. They are catching the mom taking her kid to hockey, the elderly people, the shift workers driving on the 401 or 400 at the middle of the night when it's empty. When it first came out it was a money grabber. I was driving on the 401 and there were just rows of cop cars and tow trucks just waiting. I was wondering why the cops have the right to by-pass the court system.. isn't it innocent until proven guilty? What happens when someone finally does prove that the cop was lying about it? it would be hard to do considering how open ended the law is, and lets face it there's alot of crooked cops out there ESPICIALLY DURING QUOTA TIME! BUt like I was saying, what will happen if someone goes to court and manages to win a fight on it... It's bound to happen. At that point you've already passed the punishment of 7 day impound and 7 day license suspension... I don't think the officer should have the right to pass such an open ended judgement, they are people and sometimes people can be prejuiste... particularly how after last summer with the accident on the 400 with the semi truck. Everyone seemed to be bashing young kids with their imports how they should be banned from modifying them (which they don't think of what that would do to the stores and such that sell the parts, innocent peoples suffering because they can't sell and go under then their family suffer and so on) but my biggest pet peave with that is that the people in the cars weren't young.. and they weren't driving modified imports. They were 2 older guys one in a mustang and the other in a grandam.
Oh yeah other thing I'd like to point out, just because so many people get this term wrong when they use it.

Racing - the sport of engaging in contests of speed

THERE NEEDS TO BE OTHER CONTESTANTS.. Meaning it's just SPEEDING if the person is by themselves. I'm getting sick of these street race incidents I read about in the paper, meanwhile it's just a speeder all by himself.

Roman,

This is ridiculous, They have taken your rights and freedoms from you and all you can say is "Street racing is bad" Why? because the news said so? Why don't go and check the statistics as to how many people actually die because of street racing compared to drinking and driving. More so why don't you make your own opinions that are not based on government propaganda? (THE NEWS)

If you for one second think that "speeding" is the reason they passed this law then you need to open your eyes and see that all these new laws are NOT for safety and ARE all for making money.

Oh and by the way next time you fill up and look at the price, thank the government who has invested allot of money in gasoline and will not let it go anytime soon.

Go TORONTO!!!!

RICHARD,

I think this new law is a joke. Yes I do agree we need to do something about street racing, but this is not it. doesn't anybody realize that this new law will possably lead to more accidents and fatalities. Just think, a guy on his sport bike is driving down the 401 doing 155km/h, all of the sudden he is tailed by a opp. his bike is capable of 260 km/h +. he is going to lose his bike if he stops. what do you think will go through his mind? and don't think this sort of thing doesn't happen. I have many friends in motorcycle groups and they all say that if they were faced with this situation, this new law gives them more incentive to run!!

DK,

Maybe you're right G. Maybe 150 km/hr on a modern expressway with no one else around is not such a huge offence.

I propose a speed differential law instead. So if your speed is too much greater or less than traffic around you you are charged with unsafe driving.

I think a difference of about 20 mph (30 km/hr) would be a good threshold level to start charging.

That means that if one lane of traffic is stopped, say because of a lane blockage or traffic jam, and you are driving more than 20 mph in the next lane, you are not driving safely and could be charged.

Think of the benefits!!

G.,

I'm so frustrated about this law..it's draconian at best, and pushing fascist. Driving 150 on the highway is NOT RACING...if anything we should be increasing speed limits. We're ruining peoples lives, and for what? There has been no decrease in injury or death. One police officer with 38 years experience told me that there has actually been an increase. There's a huge difference between driving quickly, and racing. Studies show that speed isn't even the most dangerous things on our roads. In fact, drinking, red light running, and inattentive driving are the most dangerous problems on our roads. This law, like so many others, was put through simply for political and economic gain. I'm ashamed that this law can be put through here.

ruben,

The law is not good at all. Police officers are no ready to judge people what happen to innocent till proven Guilty? I had a police officer in my house at 4 in the morning to tow my car and take my license because he said i slow him down when he was driving his personal car the day before... believe or not is true ...172. Slow interference.. ( I HAVE DISCLOASURE) you can get your car impounded because a police claims that you slow him down when he was off duty. I’m 21 a university student and i had to pay $700 to get my car out of impund, my insurance wants to increase my premium(i never been convicted yet) i already pay 450 never had any tickets and i have to go court to fight this, my insurance say they won’t insure me no more if im guilty and lawyer is going to charge 1500 for his fees. I cant go school next year because I have to get ready to pay all this .not a good law at all. And not mad that i have to go court but giving a police officer the right to tow your car and supped your license 7 dayz not right .Please people think smart.
Any help or recommendation email at rubenjgl@gmail.com

Russ,

I would like to agree with the majority of people on this one i agree with the basis of the law and trying to eliminate street racing and unexplained road fatalities, in another sense i dont believe the police, government have any right to take crush any vehicle of anyones. The other problem i ahve with this law is that this country is so discrimatory towards certain age groups and genders. Yes people i said it canda discriminates. I pay a huge insurance rate all because i am a guy under 25 just because stats show we speed more so you are saying i am the same as those people hence i am being categorized and disriminated upon and this is a direct violation of my right and freedoms here in canada. This all ties into street racing and this law because you know if they see two modified cars driving along side each other that they are going to automatically assume they are racing just cause of age, gender and vehicle type. I was a tuner..we are the new age hot rodders and the b.s i delt with made me get rid of my vehicle. I was driving 60 in a 50 one time beside one of my good tuners friends like days after the new street racing law was put into place and we get pulled over saying we were racing yet we wernt at all...discrimination. And chris if you get into a accident at 110 or 130 you hsould be very lucky to live since have you veer seen a crash test for vehicles...those are done at 60 imagine what happend at 100

chris,

THIS IS FOR EVERYONE WHO IS UPSET WITH THE LAW AGAINST RACING...DON'T DRIVE 40KM OVER THE SPEED LIMIT AND YOU'LL BE OK.110KM YOUR OK,115KM IS NORMALLY A WARNING,118KM+ IS WHEN IT SUCKS.HOW BOUT MAKING ONTARIO SPEED LIMITS 110KM/HR THEN U COULD GO 120KM/HR LIKE U CAN AT 110KM/HR AND NOTHING MAJOR HAPPENS,OR EVEN 105KM/HR MAX SPEED THEN U CAN DO 115KM/HR.LET'S FACE IT,WE ALL BEEN ANNOYED WITH LONG DRIVES,CONGESTION,ETC,BUT IN THE END IS IT WORTH LOSING A LIFE GOING 30KM PLUS MORE THAN THE SPEED LIMIT?CARS OR AT LEAST NEW CARS ARE DESIGNED TO KEEP U ALIVE IN A 126KM ACCIDENT,U HAVE A BETTER SURVIVAL RATE IF U DON'T DRIVE LOONY.AND IF SOMEONE CLOSE TO THEM DIED FROM A FAST DRIVER,THEY WOULDN'T BE ARGUING THIS LAW.SAYING EVERYONE GETS TARGETTED A SPEED RAISER IS LIKE SAYING DRUG LAWS ARE BEING RACIET AND EVERYONE GETS TARGETED WITH DRUGS,SO NO MUCH OF A COMPARISON,JUST DIFFERENT PRETEXT.AND TOURISTS THAT GO TO ANY REGION THEY ARE NOT NATIVE TO NORMALLY DRIVE THE SPEED LIMITS OF THAT REGION SINCE AN OUT OF PROVINCE LICENCE PLATE WOULD BE MORE PRON,THIS IS ANYWHERE YOU GO BY THE WAY.FOR PEOPLE LIVING IN TORONTO,WHY NEED A CAR?THEY HAVE PUBLIC TRANSIT,AND ITS CHEAPER THAN GAS AND HIGH INSURANCE RATES LIVING IN THE CITY

Peter,

I believe in justice which includes punishment proportional to the crime. Yesterday I made a poor decision and was speeding on HWY 7 in order to get to friends funeral on time. This is no excuse however and I readily admit that I deserve a speeding ticket. The OPP noticed I was speeding in an unmarked car but did not immediately pull me over. The officer waited until I was passing some cars during which my speed greatly increased up to 132km/hr. When I pass cars on a two line highway I do so only when I have a km of straight open space and I try to do so as quickly as possible to get out of the other lane. Rather than stopping and fining me for doing 120 he chose to enact the full measure of this law - immediately suspending my license and impounding my car for 7 days. I was polite and co-operative at the time and until them my driving record was completely clean. Other than the excessive speed I was not maneuvering in an unsafe manner and the weather and road condition were ideal. In retrospect it seems that the young officer either was overly zealous or had a grudge. My car is shared with friend as a means to car pool to work and by a family member to get around down. Why are they being punished for my infraction? If my license is suspended for 7 days it is completely redundant to take my car - unless one believes that I will drive without my license. There was and is no reason for the officer to believe that I would break the law in this way. In effect I was pronounced guilty of driving without a license in advance. This is not justice. Even by instantly suspending my license it assumes that given that I was speeding in this instance that I would not learn my lesson and I am already presumed guilty of further speeding. In short I made a bad judgment call in speeding and I feel I deserved a speeding ticket. What I am faced with now seems to me to be so severe and heavy handed as to be spit in the face of justice. I am not saying that these measures should not be applied to dangerous drives that cut people off at high speed or actively race other cars or otherwise driving dangerously. I do however believe that someone should be proven guilty before being punished. The ability of the officer in my case to take my car and license immediately without reasonable cause is counter this principal. In other words I respect the goals of this law but it needs some fixing or officers need better training and/or guidelines.

Jason,

John.. you talk about police officers being too dumb yet you mention fascist/communist as a description of the law. Well John, which one is it? fascism and communism are on opposite sides of the political spectrum.
Before you complain about cops being "too dumb to walk in a straight line".. you should probably ensure that your statement is free of errors.

John,

I agree with Harry. Most police officers are too dumb to walk in a straight line never mind using an instrument such as a LIDAR. Putting too much power into police hands is an open invitation to corruption. I've seen way too many times how cops do favors do whoever interests them while "enforcing" the law on the rest of us. This new racing law is purely fascist/communist and should either be changed to include the right to appeal or be taken out entirely.

harry verderchki,

Look on the 401 the average speed is 124 to 130 km per hour when traffic is clear. You trying to say going another 25 km an hour faster on the 401 quantifies this. I don't. On city streets I would agree. I see police officers cruising over 50km per hour for no real reason all the time. Why is this ok?? Further it would appear that the lack of training on equipment or passing the training on using laser radar and other types of radar can lead to big mistakes being made. I have seen an OPP shooting laser radar through his glass window because he was too damn lazy to do it right. The refractive index of glass will affect the laser reading and depending on the angle it was taken could give some very erroneous information. Also many are not trained on how the location they are shooting the radar affects the results. Shooting over a distance of 1000 feet widens the radar beam to which it gets over 3 feet. Well if you have someone passing you going faster .. guess what . That police officer who isnt trained to know that the light hitting the car beside you is reflecting back the results of the other car. Wait till it happens to you and you can't do anything about it because an officer is just to dumb and lazy to do his job right. Most police think that the laser light stays a tiny little dot and doesnt broaden out with distance. Most have no idea what a cosine error is and the effects of shooting light at different angles. Larger the angle, the larger the error. Throw in some elevation changes and you can be in for a little shock at just how far wrong the numbers can be. Unfortunately the equipment doesnt compensate for poor training and laziness.

Nigel,

Well Walter, I'm sure you'd agree that only a fool would believe that every police officer will always act in a fair, unbiased and objective manner. That's why we have a series of checks and balances. These new laws remove those checks and balances and put excessive power in the hands of the police. And to what end? The severity of these new laws is completely out of all proportion to the seriousness of the issue. Any traffic related death is tragic. However, the removal of due process and the disproportional punishment inflicted in a dubious attempt to improve traffic safety scares the hell out of me because I personally have had a run in with an officer trying to enforce his own personal agenda. The goal does not justify the means.

Walter,

The name says it all - "street racing".

The street is NOT the place for racing, period.So to Nigel above, How about no traffic fatalities due to street racing, and none for alcohol would be even better.

cole,

yes they should have the law but i think the impounding is like theft takeing somthing that is not yours it is no right at all and people should fight back..

Nigel,

I find it remarkable that absolutely no mention was made in this article of the fact that Rob Manchester had a blood-alcohol level two times above the legal limit! This does not excuse Rodriguez and Gasparro for their irresponsible driving. However, it’s deplorable how the media and politicians have largely ignored this fact and spun the incident to justify giving police Gestapo-like authority to curb “Street Racing”. Of the over 700 traffic fatalities a year in Ontario, close to 200 are alcohol related, yet only a handful are due to “Street Racing”. Need I say more?

Norm,

it is a good thing to have laws of the road, but when it becomes a way for the government to make extra cash,I think that the law is going to fast.At first, the law was intended to decrease road racing around cities. now its targeting every one because of the money that it can bring in. This is a country that use to be a free country, i believe in safety, but Canada (ontario) get real

Jesse Rudavsky,

I cannot believe a liberal premiere (Dalton Mcguinty), would propose such facist legislation. I suspect Ontario will lose tourism business because of this law. I will never visit Ontario ever again. This law gives police way too much power.

Stuart,

We dont have such penalties in the UK such as vehicle inpoundin for the offences mentioned in the article. But I think it is excellent deterent.

Wake up UK. Get the loonys off the road.

Stuart

Turbo'd SC300,

I agree with the stiffer penalties. On open roads without intersections, sure...open it up and run with it. But running in and out of traffic is just stupid. Sure, you're a good driver...but you don't know when that flat will happen, or what that guy in front of you is thinking while he's on th phone and cuts you off while you're doing 140MPH...

Jonathon,

Good article. I know my friends all say that having their car taken away would be the worst possible punishment, so I think people are gonna think twice.


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