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Highway Traffic Act Section 128

Speeding in the Highway Traffic Act

The offence of speeding (Highway Traffic Act section 128) is a common traffic violation that can have serious consequences under the Ontario Highway Traffic Act (HTA). This blog post aims to shed light on the offence of speeding, covering its definition, essential elements, penalties, and potential defences.

Definition of Speeding, Highway Traffic Act Section 128

In Ontario, speeding is a term used to describe the act of driving a vehicle at a speed greater than the posted speed limit. Speed limits are established to ensure the safety of all road users and are typically indicated by signage on highways, roads, and streets. Violating these limits constitutes an offence under the HTA.

Elements of the Offence

To prove the offence of speeding, the prosecution must establish two key elements:

  1. Exceeding the Posted Speed Limit: The accused must have been driving at a speed higher than the speed limit indicated on the road.
  2. Operation of a Motor Vehicle: The prosecution must demonstrate that the accused was operating a motor vehicle at the time of the offence.

Penalties for Speeding

The penalties for speeding in Ontario vary based on the extent of the violation. Common consequences include:

  1. Fines: Speeding fines can range from $3 per km/h to $19.50 per km/h over the limit.
  2. Demerit Points: Convictions for speeding also lead to the accumulation of demerit points on the driver's record, potentially impacting insurance premiums and licensing.
  3. License Suspension: Excessive speeding or multiple convictions may result in a license suspension, preventing the individual from legally driving for a specified period.
  4. Insurance Premium Increases: Speeding convictions can lead to higher insurance premiums as insurers consider the driver to be at a greater risk.

Defences Against Speeding Charges

While each case is unique, common defences against speeding charges may include:

  1. Inaccurate Speed Measurement: Challenging the accuracy of speed measurement devices, such as radar guns, can be a valid defence.
  2. Necessity or Emergency: Demonstrating that exceeding the speed limit was necessary due to an emergency situation may be a valid defence.
  3. Incorrect Identification: If the accused can prove that they were not the driver at the time of the offence, it can result in a dismissal of charges.

Understanding the nuances of the offence of speeding in Ontario is crucial for all drivers. Being aware of the elements of the offence, potential penalties, and available defences empowers individuals to make informed decisions on the road and, if necessary, navigate the legal process effectively. Always prioritize road safety and adhere to posted speed limits to ensure a secure and stress-free driving experience.

See also:

Highway Traffic Act Section 128 - Speeding Defence

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