February 20, 2019
One-Metre Rule Improves Road Safety
On March 5, 2019, changes to the Highway Traffic Act aimed at increasing safety for cyclists and pedestrians will come into effect.
The one-metre rule will require a driver of a motor vehicle to leave one metre of open space between the vehicle and bicycle or pedestrian on highways with posted speed limits of 60 kilometres per hour or less. Where posted speed limits are greater than 60 kilometers per hour the required distance would be one and a half metres.
Under the Highway Traffic Act, "pedestrian" means a person on foot, a person in or on a mobility aid, or a child in a carriage or sleigh. The penalty for violations of the one-metre rule will range between $100 and $400, or 2-14 days imprisonment, as well as two demerit points.
These amendments, which were developed in consultation with stakeholder groups, follow continued improvements to the Highway Traffic Act including those related to drug-impaired driving, distracted driving, excessive speeding, stunting, street racing and other offences.
“The Highway Traffic Act aims to protect all road users, including cyclists and pedestrians. The new one-metre rule will allow a safe distance between vehicular traffic and those who choose to walk or bike. Safety is always a top priority and we regularly amend the act to ensure our roadways are as safe as possible.”
Honourable Sherry Gambin-Walsh
Minister of Service NL
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2019 02 20 2:25 p.m.