Monday 2 January 2012

Snow vehicles speed laws - safety


And still they die.

14.  (1)  No person shall drive a motorized snow vehicle at a greater rate of speed than,
(a) 20 kilometres per hour,
(i) on a highway where the speed limit established pursuant to the Highway Traffic Act is 50 kilometres per hour or less, or
(ii) in any public park or exhibition grounds; or
(b) 50 kilometres per hour,
(i) on any highway which is open to motor vehicle traffic, where the speed limit established pursuant to theHighway Traffic Act is greater than 50 kilometres per hour, or
(ii) on a trail. R.S.O. 1990, c. M.44, s. 14 (1).

Can someone tell me why they make machines capable of such high speeds?

The laws are clear, but we find that those still drive at high speeds, drink and drive, or drive unsafely.
Our rural volunteer firefighters are called to action.

In southern Ontario, 2007, an off-duty Durham officer (41) and a friend (44),  were using a radar at night, on a lake, to test the speed of their machine. They were on Lake Scugog, in the dark and the friend killed the officer. I still remember the horror of this story. 

To help educate Ontario snowmobilers, the OPP and the OFSC are providing the following checklist. A compliant snowmobile operator must always have on their person or sled:

- Valid driver's licence (or if under age 16, a Snow Vehicle Operator's Licence)
- Proof of snowmobile ownership
- Sled registration (including properly placed registration numbers and validation sticker on sled)
- Proof of sled insurance (pink slip)
- Approved snowmobile helmet (for each rider)
- 2010 Snowmobile Trail Permit (properly displayed on the sled) with permit receipt

In addition, the rules of the road apply to this sport:

  • speeding,
  • failing to stop at a road crossing and
  • driving with blood/alcohol levels exceeding the legal limit.

Failure to comply with the law carries penalties including fines, loss of driver's licence, criminal charges and/or imprisonment.


Permit and registration requirements
Trail permit required
Administrative requirements
Registration number to be kept clean, unobstructed
Driving on King’s Highway or secondary highway
Duty of driver when school bus stopped on highway
Municipal by-laws, etc.
Crossing roadway
Driving requirements
Operator’s licences
Crown liability, delegation
Application of certain Acts
Duty to report accident
Speed limit
Careless driving
Driver’s obligations
Stopping for vehicles with red or red and blue lights
Power of police officer to stop
Equipment requirements
Driver shall wear helmet
Vehicle shall bear National Safety Mark
Risks willingly assumed
Liability of owner
Owner may be convicted
Offences and fines

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