Pursuant to Ontario distracted driving law, it is illegal for drivers to talk, text, type, dial or email using hand-held cell phones and other hand-held devices while driving. However, many drivers are misinformed about what they can do when using hands-free communication devices or other hands-free devices while driving.
Many Ontario drivers know that the use of hand-held cell phones are prohibited while driving, but many may not realize that use of other communication or entertainment devices is also prohibited. Examples of other communication or entertainment devices include:
- GPS devices,
- MP3 players,
- Laptops, and
- DVD players.
Use of Bluetooth While Driving in Ontario
Ontario law allows drivers to use Bluetooth devices to talk on their cell phones while driving. However, many drivers believe that because they use a Bluetooth, dialing and scrolling through contacts on the cell phone are allowed. This is not true. Drivers are allowed to use the Bluetooth to activate a hands-free function, and the device must be mounted or secured, i.e., mounted on a dashboard. Drivers are not allowed to take their hands off the wheel and scroll through contacts to make a call. If drivers want to talk on their cell phones through a Bluetooth, they must use voice commands to call someone.
Use of GPS Devices While Driving in Ontario
While the use of GPS devices is allowed when driving, drivers often mistakenly believe that they can manually program GPS devices while driving. Inputting an address into a GPS device while driving is barred under Ontario law. Drivers must input the information into the GPS device before they start driving.
Use of Portable Media Players While Driving in Ontario
Drivers are not allowed to view display screens unrelated to driving while behind the wheel. Examples of portable media players include DVD devices or iPods. If a driver wants to play music from an iPod while driving, he must activate the play list before he starts driving.
Distracted Driving Leads to Serious Auto Accidents & Catastrophic Injuries
Accidents happen in a matter of seconds. When drivers take their eyes off the road and/or hands off the wheel to program a GPS device, dial a number or find a playlist, they can cause serious accidents and catastrophic injuries to themselves and other motorists on the road.
For example, a driver who is looking for a contact on the phone may cross over to oncoming traffic and cause a catastrophic head-on collision. Injured victims’ lives may be turned upside down due to serious injuries, such as brain injuries and spinal cord injuries, suffered in such accidents. In addition, distracted drivers may face criminal consequences and injured victims may file tort claims against them to recover for their injuries and damages.
Ontario Auto Accident Injury Lawyers
If you’ve been injured in an auto accident in Ontario caused by a distracted driver, please call the lawyers at Bergeron Clifford to schedule a free consultation. 1-866-384-5886