Toronto drivers could soon be fined hundreds for a very popular traffic infraction
A common Toronto driving infraction that clogs our streets multiple times a day could soom result in higher charges for impatient drivers.
Deputy Mayor Jennifer McKelvie has proposed a motion to hike up the charges for annoying "blocking the box" infractions from a measly $85 to a whopping $450.
Not sure how to block a box? In simplest terms, it's when a driver proceeds into an intersection before the traffic ahead has cleared.
Since there is no space in front of the driver to proceed, they are essentially stuck in the middle of the intersection. It is especially dangerous when opposite traffic, cyclists or pedestrians have the right-of-way.
It's time to send a strong message that blocking the box will cost you.— Jennifer McKelvie (@McKelvieTO) April 2, 2023
This week, City Council approved my push to crack down on drivers caught blocking the box and adding to congestion in Toronto.
Find more details below. pic.twitter.com/SagWBUOe0c
For the fine increase, McKelvie has requested that the province review existing structure and consider upping the charges.
She also requested that fines for an improper stop at an intersection in community safe zones be hiked from $120 to $500.
"Regardless of whether you are walking, cycling, riding transit, or driving, we have all had the experience of major intersections being blocked by inconsiderate drivers who have proceeded into the intersection despite there not being enough room to clear the intersection. That vehicle ends up blocking traffic lanes, bike lanes, and/or pedestrian crossings," reads the motion.
This situation happens every day in the city, especially around rush hours, when hundreds of cars pour into the streets, and drivers are especially low on patience.
When a car blocks the box, it prevents other cars travelling in the opposite direction from proceeding and often forces pedestrians off the crosswalk and into the road.
"Disruptive drivers that 'block the box' when a vehicle enters an intersection and cannot travel all the way through, results in a domino effect preventing cross-traffic movement and endangering other travellers by blocking crosswalks and bike lanes. In other words, blocking the box is unsafe and illegal and causes increased traffic congestion," read McKelvie's motion.
The motion was approved by city council, but now it's up to the province to see if box-blockers will lose more money.
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