Safer School Zone Q&A

What is the law regarding school areas?

To help make school zones safer, the speed limit is 30 km/h in areas where the approaching limit is 50 km/h, when children are present. Where the speed limit is higher than 50 km/h, drivers continue to be required to reduce speed to a maximum of 50 km/h when children are present.

What was the reason for the change in the law on Sept. 12, 2012?

Child safety is the primary reason for reducing speed limits in some school areas. The different speed thresholds were chosen because speed limit reductions for drivers need to be reasonable if drivers are required to comply with them. A driver can reasonably be expected to reduce speed from 50 km/h to 30 km/h over a relatively short distance. However, it would not be reasonable to expect drivers to reduce their speed from 70 or 80 km/h to 30 km/h over that same distance.

Does the reduced speed limit apply at all times?

The reduced speed limit applies at all times when children are present in the school area.

What is the definition for "when children are present"?

School zone speed limits have always been in effect "when children are present." This is not new. Children present is defined as being (i) on the highway in the school area , or (ii) outdoors, within 30 metres of the highway, in the school area. This reduced speed limit will be in effect 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year when children are present in the school area.

What are the penalties associated with speeding in a school area?

Speed fines and penalties are detailed in the following table and are dependent on the degree at which the motorist is above the reduced speed limit in the school area.

Exceeds School Area Speed   Total Fine   Penalty Points
1-15 km/h   $ 340.21   2
16-30 km/h   $ 455.21   3
31 km/h or more   $ 685.21   4