Changes to the Quebec Highway Safety Code
On April 17, the Quebec National Assembly unanimously adopted the Bill to amend the current Highway Safety Code. The new measures that tighten the Code will come into effect gradually.
The changes aim to improve the safety of all road users, including pedestrians. Reference is made to a certain hierarchy of users, from the most imposing to the most vulnerable ones.
Cyclists will have to tackle their bad habits. As of June 30, using a cell phone while riding a bicycle will be prohibited. As well, cyclists will no longer be permitted to use headphones.
The date for vehicles to be equipped with winter tires will change by a few weeks. As of December 1, 2019, all passenger vehicles will need to have winter tires up to March 15.
Repeat offenders of driving under the influence of alcohol will be required to use an ignition interlock device. This device includes a breath test that detects alcohol consumption. If alcohol presence is detected the device will lock the vehicle and prevent starting the engine. The date when this measure will come into force was not announced.
As of April 18, cyclists will see higher fines for offences, as much as $80 to $100. A driver without his safety belt on could be fined over $300. As of June 30, 2018, a driver using a hand held device while driving could end up with an automatic suspension of his driving licence and the fine could be as high as $600.
As of August 1, 2019, fines for speeding in a school zone will double. (Trans.: CB)