News release

Province Moves to Further Improve Road Safety

As of July 1, unsafe drivers will face higher fines for dangerous motor vehicle offences including racing on highways, speeding and driving with suspended licences.

There will also be fine increases for disobeying crossing guards, failing to yield to pedestrians at crosswalks and failing to use caution when passing a moving school bus. All of these offences carry a fine of up to $2,000.

"Improving public safety and protecting pedestrians is a priority for government," said Jamie Muir, Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations. "Stricter penalties for these types of offences will help ensure that our communities are safe."

Last year 71 fatalities resulted from traffic crashes on provincial highways and streets. To discourage further incidences, the province has increased penalties. Mr. Muir said the penalties will relay the seriousness of the issue and deter people from repeating these offences.

The penalty for racing on highways will increase from $100 to $250 for the first offence, with additional convictions yielding a maximum of $1,000. Penalties for speeding will increase based on how fast the driver is travelling. Speeding in a school area or church will carry a fine from $150 to $600. Exceeding the speed limit by up to 16 kilometres per hour, and speeding over 50 kilometres per hour by a school, church or danger area will result in a $150-$600 fine. Driving 31 or more kilometres per hour above the speed limit will cost the driver $250-$1,000. The penalty for driving when a licence has been suspended will be up to $2,000.

The fines for disobeying crossing guards and failing to yield to a pedestrian at a crosswalk will range from $250-$1,000. The penalty for failing to use caution when passing a moving school bus will be $500 for a first offence with a maximum fine of $2,000.

The changes are among the latest amendments to the Motor Vehicle Act aimed at making Nova Scotia's highways and roads safer for motorists and pedestrians. In total, 168 fines will be increased.

For more information see the Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations website at www.gov.ns.ca/snsmr under "popular topics".

FOR BROADCAST USE:

As of July 1st, unsafe drivers will face higher fines for dangerous motor vehicle offences including racing on highways, speeding and driving with suspended licences.

Speeding penalties will increase. The more a driver exceeds the speed limit, the more it will cost.

All other fines will increase based on the severity of the offence and number of convictions.

Jamie Muir, Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations, says that improving public safety and protecting pedestrians is a priority for government. He added that stricter penalties for these types of offences will help ensure that communities are safe.

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Media Contact:

Lenore Bromley
Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations 902-424-2733 E-mail: