Ontario is hoping to make roads across the province safer, and to help residents save money on their insurance bills.

Minister of Transportation Steven Del Duca has announced that insurance companies in Ontario must now offer a winter tire insurance discount for all drivers in the province. Drivers can have their auto insurance rates reduced by between two and five per cent for installing four winter tires.

Ontario has expanded their Track My Plow program to all 20 of the province’s winter maintenance contract areas, to help people track the location of snowplows in the area. Drivers are reminded to give snow plows plenty of room and to never pass a working snowplow.

The province has also added a new “forecasted road conditions” feature to Ontario 511, that predicts road conditions based on forecasted weather, precipitation, wind and temperature to help drivers plan their routes. The traveller information service also includes current reported road conditions, traffic cameras, weather cameras and more to help drivers stay informed.

Del Duca reminded the public that winter tires provide better handling, breaking and traction, and to assemble a winter survival kit in their vehicles. The kit typically includes items like a flashlight, blanket and a shovel. Winter tires that are in good condition can shorten braking distances by as much as 25 per cent.

“With some areas of the province already experiencing snow, we are reminding drivers to slow down, stay alert and in control this winter driving season,” said Del Duca. “Ontario has some of the safest roads in North America and our government is committed to upholding the highest winter maintenance standards. I encourage everyone to do their part to ensure each and every one of us get home safely to our families this winter,” he said, in a prepared release.

Ontario’s roads are among the safest in North America. Between 1995 and 2014, the number of driving-related fatalities decreased by 48 per cent.

More than 12 million litres of anti-icing liquid were used last winter to help prevent ice and snowpack from forming on provincial highways.

For more information:
Ontario 511 – Road Conditions
Ontario - Track My Plow 

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