We all speed at some point in our driving lives – some by a few km/h, others by larger amounts – but it’s well known that a percentage of drivers are only caught speeding through pure chance. In order to fight a speeding ticket you will need to understand what your rights are as well as where you can turn for help. But what’s more important is to understand why speeding laws exist and how breaking a speed limit can affect you and other road users.
A lot of the time, the first question a driver will ask themselves upon being cautioned for speeding is: “How will this affect my insurance?” The answer is simple. The insurance company will immediately increase your premium and it’s actually usually irrelevant as to how many points a conviction is worth. The simple fact that you have a conviction in the first place is enough to spook your insurance carrier and that’s without taking into consideration how accrued demerit points will affect your ability to even get decent insurance in the future.
Speeding laws are put in place to prevent accidents and ultimately deaths from dangerous driving. Without speeding laws there would be absolute chaos on the roads with deaths a regular occurrence. Speeding can cause a chain reaction of events that you couldn’t even begin to comprehend as a driver. Being in the wrong place at the wrong time will cause other drivers to react out of instinct, which in turn causes other drivers to react too. This is a common cause of massive accidents and fatalities. The number of deaths by speeding collisions is fortunately on the decline, however in 2013 alone there were 1,741 speeders killed, taking 1,923 victims’ lives simultaneously.
So, how are speeding offences punished? Should you be unfortunate enough to find yourself speeding unawares then the chances are you will only be a few km/h above the limit in which case you won’t receive any demerit points. However, even if Canada is governed by Provincial laws (each province can set its own statutes and laws,) speeding is a serious offence wherever you happen to be. The list of demerit points receivable climbs increasingly quickly the more serious the offence. For example should you be speeding by more than 45km/h but less than 50km/h in an area where the speed limit is under 60km/h you will receive 10 demerit points. But in an area where the speed limit is above 60km/h or above 100km/h you will only receive 5 demerit points.
Either way, the punishment for speeding will often be accompanied by a hefty fine. Such fines are handed out NOT to line the pockets of the government, but to make an example of speeders as well as to discourage further offences. It’s not used to send the government’s fat cats away on holiday each year. In fact the money from speeding fines is thought to be handed out to provinces in order to improve road safety and reduce speeding – a worthy cause.