What is distracted driving?

In simple words, it is an act of driving while taking part in other activities that diverts the driver’s attention from the road. It can put you and others in danger. 

Examples of distracted driving are

  • Using mobile phones (calling, texting)
  • Eating or drinking
  • Reading a book or newspaper
  • Watching movies
  • Smoking
  • Talking to Passengers
  • Grooming (shaving, applying make-up)

Distracted driving is against the law across Canada; provinces and territories use their own rules and regulations that’s why penalties may differ. Wherever you live, distracted driving can result in heavy fines and demerit points by the traffic authority.

Statistics of Distracted driving 

Even though having less traffic on the road and fewer accidents in the previous year(2020) due to the pandemic, Ontario’s Provincial Police has still recorded almost the same number of casualties compared to the last year. Based on the collected data, police say that 285 severe road accidents happened last year in 2020 and it is only 19 less than in 2019. Many of them were escapable, 45 of them happened due to distracted driving.

The number of casualties has doubled in the province since 2000. To put an end to this unsafe practice, the government has initiated strict consequences, including demerit points and a heavy fine for not avoiding distracted driving. 

Durham’s distracted Driving Law

Durham’s distracted driving law focuses on the use of handheld devices. It is against the law to use your mobile phone or any handheld device while driving or stopped at the signal. You’re only permitted to use your phone to call an emergency. You’re not allowed to operate handheld devices like tablets, iPods, playing video games, or watching movies.

You’re permitted to use a hands-free wireless device with Bluetooth. You’re also allowed to view the GPS display screen only if it is mounted on your dashboard.

Eating, drinking, smoking, grooming are not included in Durham’s distracted law. But if the police caught you doing these, you’ll be charged for driving carelessly. A driver needs to get proper driving training from the best driving schools in Durham to be a safe and responsible driver. Durham driving lessons help drivers to learn lessons with complete concentration on driving a car rather than other unnecessary things.

Penalties for Distracted Driving in Ontario

First Offence:

  • Fine of 615 dollars to 1000 dollars
  • fine up to 1000 dollars (if you go to court and lose after your first conviction)
  •  Three demerit points.

 Second Offence:

  • Fine of 615 dollars to 2000 dollars 
  • Fine goes up to 2000 dollars (if you fight a case in court and lose)
  • Six demerit points

Third and further convictions:

  • Fine of 615 dollars to 3000 dollars
  • Fine goes up to 3000 dollars (if you fight a case in court and lose). 
  • Six demerit points.

Penalties for Careless Driving

You could encounter heavy fines for driving carelessly. You may face the consequences of putting others’ lives at risk. Careless driving mainly includes using handheld devices (mobile phones, hands-free, or Bluetooth devices).

Not causing injuries

If sentenced for careless driving but not causing injuries

  • Six demerit points
  • fine of 2000 dollars
  • Jail sentence for six months
  •  Increased or Nullification of the insurance policy.

Causing Injuries or Death

  • A fine from 2000 dollars to up to 50000 dollars
  • Jail sentence for up to 2 years
  • Extension or invalidation of insurance policy


Drivers are supposed to drive responsibly and with concentration so that everyone on the road safely reaches their destination. Being focused while driving is highly recommended for safety purposes, to avoid distractions and penalties for not following the distracted driving laws by the government