Your Personal Injury Lawyers
Call 1-888-404-5167
Preszler Injury Lawyers

How to Avoid the #1 Cause of Car Accidents in Ontario

Distracted driving is a problematic national issue, to say the least. Provinces are toughening the laws to discourage cellphone use and distracted driving, but the number of associated accidents is still far too high.

According to the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP):

“Distracted driving is cited as a causal factor in 30 to 50% of traffic collisions on Ontario, but is probably much higher due to under-reporting.”

On a wider scale, distracted driving is a contributing factor in roughly 4 million traffic accidents in North America, according to the Canadian Automobile Association (CAA).

The Dangers of Distracted Driving in Canada

In its online education portal, the CAA provides a handful of statistics regarding distracted driving that should serve as a wake-up call for Canadians. A few facts especially stand out.

  • Drivers who text are eight times as likely to be involved in a crash. Speaking on a cellphone, hands-free or not, makes you four times as likely. (AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety)
  • Four out of five collisions involve some form of driver inattention, while about two-third of near-crashes do. (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration)
  • Our economic losses in Canada due to health costs and lost productivity after traffic collisions totals more than $10 billion per year. (Government of Canada)

Per the OPP, distracted driving fatalities surpassed both impaired and speed-related fatalities as the cause of motor vehicle collisions in 2013. That year, 78 people died in accidents related to distracted driving.

Today, about one person is injured in a distracted-driving accident in Ontario every half-hour.

Ontario Distracted Driving Laws

In Ontario, you can be penalised — and heavily — for distracted driving. It is against the law to use any hand-held device or electronic entertainment device (such as an e-reader) while driving. The only exception is turning a hand-held device on or off. You can use a mounted device, such as GPS, but only if it stays in place.

The type of fine depends on the licence you have:

  • A to G licences: $490 fine if settled out of court (up to $1,000 if summons received), plus three demerit points.
  • G1, G2, M1 or M2 licences: same fines minus demerit points; instead, you’ll receive a 30-day licence suspension for first offence, 90-day for second offence, and cancellation of your license for the third offence with removal from the Graduated Licensing System.

Sound worth it? We think not.

Common Driver Distractions

Unfortunately, not all distractions in the car are because of our technology. While you may face fines or a licence suspension by using a cellphone while driving, there are other ways to create dangers on the road.

Here are some of the common types of distractions drivers engage in while driving:

  • Texting and driving
  • Engaging in conversation with passengers
  • Children or animals in the car
  • Talking on the phone
  • Using a handheld device (to surf the internet, engage in social media, scroll through photos, play music)
  • Reading
  • Reading a navigation system’s screen
  • Reading road signs
  • Looking at an outside object, person, or event
  • Trying to stop something from moving in the car
  • Putting on makeup and other forms of personal grooming
  • Reaching for something
  • Eating or drinking

See also: 9 Tips for Avoiding a Car Accident While Driving in Toronto

How to Reduce Distracted Driving in Ontario

It’s imperative for everyone to do their part and avoid behaviors that cause you to become distracted. Your life — and everyone else’s on the road — could depend on it.

Keep the following tips in mind to help reduce your risk of a distraction-related accident.

  • Take the pledge not to text and drive. Take the D.O.N.T. (Drive Only… Never Text) pledge online, and use the hashtag #iDONTpledge to spread the word.
  • Read over the directions to your location prior to embarking. You don’t want to fumble with a map or your navigator while driving.
  • Ensure your children, pets, and loose objects are properly secured in the vehicle.
  • Do not use your mobile device for any reason while driving. Texting can wait, and phone calls can go to voicemail. If it’s urgent, pull over in a safe area.
  • Save the eating and grooming for when you’re stopped.

The OPP’s tweet (@OPP_News) provides a simple, effectual call to action: “Arrive alive. It’s your responsibility to direct your entire attention to driving safely.”

Legal Help for an Ontario Distracted Driving Accident

If you or your loved one have been involved in a distracted-driving accident in Ontario, contact our lawyers at Preszler Injury Lawyers today. We may be able to help you seek the compensation you deserve after a free initial consultation.

related videos


Car Accident Lawyers

Hit and Run Injury Claims

Statutory Accident Benefits & Car Accident Claims

Types of Damages in Car Accident Cases

What Are Statutory Accident Benefits?

What Insurance Cuts Mean For Drivers in Ontario

Who to Contact Following a Car Accident
Call us now at

151 Eglinton Ave W,
Toronto, ON
M4R 1A6
Fax: 1-855-364-7027
Toll Free: 1-888-608-2111
4145 N Service Rd
Burlington, ON
L7L 4X6
Fax: 1-855-364-7027
Toll Free: 1-888-608-2111
2 County Ct Blvd #400,
Brampton, ON
L6W 3W8
Fax: 1-855-364-7027
Toll Free: 1-888-608-2111
105 Consumers Drive
Whitby, ON
L1N 1C4
Fax: 1-855-364-7027
Toll Free: 1-888-608-2111
92 Caplan Ave #121,
Barrie, ON
L4N 0Z7
Fax: 1-855-364-7027
Toll Free: 1-888-608-2111
380 Wellington St Tower B, 6th Floor,
London, ON
N6A 5B5
Toll Free: 1-888-608-2111
2233 Argentia Rd Suite 302,
East Tower Mississauga, ON
L5N 6A6
Toll Free: 1-888-608-2111
1 Hunter St E,
Hamilton, ON
L8N 3W1
Fax: 1-855-364-7027
Toll Free: 1-888-608-2111
459 George St N,
Peterborough, ON
K9H 3R9
Fax: 1-855-364-7027
Toll Free: 1-888-608-2111
22 Frederick Street,
Suite 700
Kitchener, ON N2H 6M6
Fax: 1-855-364-7027
Toll Free: 1-888-608-2111
116 Lisgar Street, Suite 300
Ottawa ON
K2P 0C2
Toll Free: 1-888-608-2111
10 Milner Business Ct #300,
Scarborough, ON
M1B 3C6
Toll Free: 1-888-608-2111
*consultation offices

DISCLAIMER: Please be advised that the header image and other images throughout this website may include both lawyer and non-lawyer/paralegal employees of Preszler Injury Lawyers and DPJP Professional Corporation and unrelated third parties. Our spokesperson John Fraser, or any other non-lawyer/paralegals in our marketing is not to be construed in any way as misleading to the public. Our marketing efforts are not intended to suggest qualitative superiority to other lawyers, paralegals or law firms in any way. Any questions regarding the usage of non-lawyers in our legal marketing or otherwise can be directed to our management team. Please also note that past results are not indicative of future results and that each case is unique and that case results listed on site are from experiences across Canada and are not specific to any province. Please be advised that some of the content on this website may be out of date. None of the content is intended to act as legal advice as each situation is independent and unique and requires individual legal advice from a licensed lawyer or paralegal. For legal advice on your individual situation – we can provide legal guidance after you have contacted our firm and we have established a lawyer-client relationship contractually. Maximum contingency fee charged is 33%. Finally, our usage of awards and logos for awards does not suggest qualitative superiority to other lawyers, paralegals or law firms. All awards received from third party organizations have been done so through their own reasonable evaluative process and do not include any payment for these awards except for the use of the award logos for our marketing assets. We are also proud to service additional provinces like Alberta, British Columbia and Nova Scotia.