Montreal, Quebec -- July 2, 2018 -- Quebec drivers should put down their phones or risk facing the province's wrath, and some new, painful fines.
Those caught using cellphones while driving will now recieve tickets of up to $600 and five demerit points. Those with cell-phone related scandals in their past face even more harsh responses, with police able to suspend their liscenses for up to a month. Until the end of June, the fines were capped at $100 and four points. While the news may be less than welcome to the province's drivers, bicyclists will also see new fines. Cyclist caught wearing earbuds or using their phone will now be subject to $100 fines.
While this may sound draconian, Quebeckers who flaunt distracted driving laws are far from the most brutally punished in the nation. In Ontario, an offense may only secure four demerit points, but it will hit a driver's pocketbook to the tune of $1000. Prince Edward Islanders, however, face the toughest punishments. They loose five points and up to $1200.
While it may seem an overreaction, some statistics suggest that distracted driving is the source of a tremendous amount of danger on the road. Saskachewan Government Insurance recently described it as the leading cause of traffic collisions. In fact, according to some estimates, one-in-three vehicular repairs can be blamed on distracted drivers.