October 3, 2022

Learning to drive can be a terrifying experience for some, especially if you’re taking your final test on a highway. For teens, an increased speed limit on some highways could add to that anxiety, which could detour them from completing their full G licence.

In Ontario, for an individual to complete their G licence, they must first meet the requirements of completing their G1 and G2 tests along with knowing basic rules like highway speeds and regulations such as not exceeding 100 km/h.

On March 29, the Ontario government announced that a pilot project that was announced in 2019, will stay permanently in place beginning April 22. This project tested the increase in flow of traffic along certain highways by increasing the speed limit to 110 km/h from 100 km/h. These speed limits are scheduled to also change on five other sections permanently on major highways in Ontario.

Other permanent speed limit increases include:

  • Highway 401 from Newmarket to Woodbine, which spans 16 km
  • 37 km section of Highway 417 from Kanata to Arnprior
  • 102 km of Highway 417 from Ottawa to the Ontario-Quebec border
  • 32 km stretch of Queen Elizabeth Way from Hamilton to St. Catharines

Teens and young adults may find this 10 km/h increase overwhelming which could detour them from completing the final steps they need to get their full G driver’s licence.

As a college student and young adult who is in the final stages of completing my full G licence, I think that increasing the speeds along the highways is making me reconsider my choices about my driver’s licence. It is the speed limit that concerns me.

On most highways, if not all, there are only specific places where other automobiles are able to enter and exit and there is also a concern for balance and distance behind the various vehicles in front and behind you. Increasing the speeds could increase the flow of traffic, but it could also make it harder for drivers to brake in emergency situations if the proper amount of distance between each car is not met.

Although increasing these speeds may be beneficial to arriving at your destination earlier, it could also increase the number of accidents.

These increases should not be happening as young drivers are trained and taught to manage and maintain the speed of 100 km/h rather than 110 km/h.

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