Section 172 of Ontario’s Highway Traffic Act deals with stunt driving, racing at speeds 50 km/h or more above the speed limit and engaging in on-street driving contents that are reckless or hazardous.
Some other acts categorized as a stunt include:
- Intentionally lifting some of all of a vehicles wheels off the road such as “popping a wheelie” on a motorcycle or ramp jumping
- Purposely spinning your wheels or “burning rubber”
- Intentionally causing your car to spin out of control such as doing “donuts” or uncontrolled turns on slippery pavement
- Driving a car with someone in the trunk
- Any form of driving that is without due care such as driving while not situated in the driver’s seat or in any manner that could endanger the driver, passengers, pedestrians, property or occupants of other vehicles. This includes:
- Attempting to prevent another vehicle from passing or overtaking your vehicle
- Cutting off another vehicle or deliberately interfering with the movement of another vehicle beyond normal traffic flow
- Purposely driving as close as possible to another vehicle, pedestrian or other object, except in cases where it is necessary to do so because of space constrains or other mitigating factors
- Making a left turn on a red light on a green or yellow light in the path of oncoming traffic.
Surprised? You maybe even more surprised by the penalties that you will face committing any of these acts (alone or in combination). Not only is there an immediate 7 day driver’s licence suspension and impound of the vehicle, but if a conviction follows the fines range from a minimum $2,000 to maximum $10,000. You could also be subject to a two year licence suspension or up to 6 months in jail or both!!! And that is only for a first offence. For a subsequent offence, within ten years, you may see a suspension for up to ten years!!! Do we have your attention now?
Have you found yourself in this situation? Are you asking “is it worth it to fight this?” The answer is simple. YES!!! If convicted, Stunt driving also carries 6 demerit points. These points will stay on your record for two years and the conviction will remain for three years. This means that your insurance company can find out about this at anytime, drastically increasing your rates or causing your insurance company to disqualify you from future coverage.
Stunt driving is a Strict Liability offence. This means that the prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed the act with which you are charged. They need not prove that you intended to commit the offence however. If they can prove that you committed this offence, you may raise a defence by proving on a balance of probabilities that you took all reasonable steps to avoid the particular act or that you reasonably believed in a mistaken set of facts which, if true, would render you innocent of committing the act.
Is your head spinning yet? Stop the spinning and call OTD legal services. We can help to determine if you have a defence, minimize penalties and eliminate/minimize custody by resolving your matter in a favourable way. Rest assured that our experienced agents will work tirelessly to help. And with a former prosecutor with the Crown Attorney’s office on our side, how could you go wrong? Don’t wait call us today!