New Ont. street racing law catches 1,060 speeders
TORONTO - More than 1,000 motorists have been caught during the past month speeding 50 km/h or more over the limit and provincial police Commissioner Julian Fantino said Monday that he now regrets not making Ontario's new street racing law even tougher.
It was on Sept. 30 that police started a crackdown on excessive speeders by targeting the worst offenders and hitting them hard with several harsh penalties, including a minimum fine of $2,000, and a week without a valid licence or access to their vehicle.
To the shock of Fantino and other officials, 1,057 drivers had been caught as of Sunday and the average of about 38 daily busts stayed steady throughout the month.
"I didn't think we'd get this many to begin with, I really thought people would heed the warning,'' Fantino said, adding that he now wishes the law was even tougher.
"The only regret I have now in hindsight is that I didn't go after 30 over as opposed to 50 over.''
Fantino said he himself has nabbed a few drivers, and made a bust on Sunday when he clocked a driver going 55 km/h over the limit on Highway 401 near Belleville.
Transportation Minister Donna Cansfield said she has been thrilled with the success of the law so far but is concerned that young male drivers in particular haven't got the message.
"We need to get the message out to young people that there are alternatives, there are programs where you can choose to race, there are race tracks, there are car clubs, there are safer places to do this.''
Cansfield said more than 80 per cent of those busted have been male, and about 50 per cent were under the age of 27.