North Bay police in collaboration with the Ministry of Transportation spent the last few months focussing on vehicle fitness.

The joint inspection detail initiative was sparked following complaints.

As a result, 19 charges have been laid between July and September for drivers that failed an inspection detail.

Officers issued inspection report notices to drivers of vehicles that displayed apparent mechanical deficiencies. Those vehicles identified by police were inspected by MTO officers at the Highway 17 weigh station scale in North Bay.

Out of 28 inspections:

  • 7 passed
  • 7 failed
  • 4 plates were voluntarily terminated because the registered owner felt their vehicle would fail
  • 4 failed to show
  • 10 plates were removed after inspections revealed the vehicles were unsafe

19 drivers were charged with various offences, including: driver licence, driving or permitting the operation of an unsafe vehicle, load not properly secured, vehicle weight, expired plates, lack of annual inspection stickers, and failure to show.

The MTO says common car defects found include:

  • Leaking brake fluid, exhaust, and/or gas
  • Load security
  • Wheels, tires, and mudguards
  • Parking brake failure
  • Vehicle width
  • Signal, brake, and/or tail lights
  • Suspension springs broken, steering ball and socket joints with excessive free-play

According to the MTO driver’s handbook:

"It is illegal to drive a vehicle in dangerous condition. A police officer or Ministry of Transportation inspector can examine your vehicle, its equipment and any trailer attached to it, at any time. If the vehicle is found to be unsafe, it may be taken off the road until the problem is fixed. If you refuse to allow the examination, you can be fined up to $1,000. If the vehicle is then found to be unsafe, your licence plates can be taken away."