OPP nabs three stunt drivers on northern highways
Driver pulled over on Hwy 17 for going 144 km/h (OPP)
SUDBURY -- Excessive speeding continues to be a problem on northern highways as Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) take three vehicles off the road.
OPP said on Twitter Wednesday officers charged three different people with stunt driving.
A 24-year-old from Surrey, B.C., was stopped after allegedly travelling 160 km/h on Highway 69 south.
The Manitoulin detachment of the OPP said two separate drivers were charged on Highway 17, which resulted in having their vehicles towed from the scene and driver's licenses suspended for seven days.
Greater Sudbury Police Service told CTV News last month that the number of stunt driving charges has more than tripled when compared to last year.
Const. Michelle Coulombe, OPP community safety officer for the Nipissing West detachment, told CTV News in an email that stunt driving charges are up 55% in the area already this year. When compared to 2019 statistics, the whole northeast region has seen an increase of 7%, while Ontario has seen a 13% increase so far in 2020, with seven more weeks to go.
Speeding is considered stunt driving when a vehicle is going faster than 50 km/h or more over the speed limit.
Drivers charged with stunt driving have their vehicles impounded for seven days, face big fines and even possible jail time.
"The impound and storage fees from the tow company alone are huge," said Const. Jennifer Smith, OPP media relations officer. "Upon conviction, fines range between $2,000 and $10,000 or up to six months in jail. For a first offence conviction, a drivers' licence can be suspended for up to two years and for subsequent offences, up to 10 years."
Police said many fatal crashes are caused by excessive speeding.
"Aggressive driving, including speeding, is one of the leading causal factors in traffic deaths in OPP patrolled areas," said Inspector Joel Breault, of the Temiskaming OPP. "Speeding often leads to other aggressive driving behaviours such as following too closely and unsafe lane changes."