Ontario announced it is taking steps to improve traffic safety along Highway 401 in eastern Ontario by introducing new winter driving measures.
Alongside local mayors and representatives of the OTA and OPP at a press event in Kingston on Friday, Steven Del Duca, Minister of Transportation, highlighted actions the province is taking to improve commercial motor vehicle safety in the region.
Throughout the winter, the province will conduct a series of targeted commercial vehicle enforcement actions, focused on distracted and aggressive driving and the safe transportation of dangerous goods on Ontario’s highways.
The province is helping drivers make informed decisions during winter driving conditions, by introducing improvements to the information provided to all drivers, including commercial vehicles and carriers of dangerous goods. Ontario will add more changeable message signs along Highway 401 from Port Hope to the Quebec border to provide real-time weather specific warnings to all drivers so that they can drive for the conditions, or make alternate travel plans.
A new forecasted driving conditions feature is now also available on Ontario 511 that predicts driving conditions based on forecasted weather, precipitation, wind and temperature, all to help drivers plan their routes. The traveller information service also includes current reported road conditions and more traffic and weather cameras to help drivers stay informed and plan their trips.
“Everyone has a role to play when it comes to road safety. We will continue working with the mayors, and all our partners in policing, trucking and road safety, to keep all drivers safe this winter. Through our new winter driving measures, drivers can stay informed and better plan their trips,” said Steven Del Duca, Minister of Transportation
OTA’s VP of Communications, Marco Beghetto, who on hand for the event, applauded the announcement. He pointed out the provincial trucking industry already has an excellent safety record on mechanical fitness and the transportation of dangerous goods, but added there’s room for improving commercial driver behaviour.
He said today’s announcement complements OTA’s five-point action plan to improve highway safety unveiled last month.
“OTA is very proud of the trucking industry’s safety record, but as an industry that shares its workplace with the public we have a responsibility to work with our safety stakeholders to pursue strategies and programs that can improve highway safety for commercial drivers as well as the travelling public. We look forward to continuing these efforts.”