Quebec winters can be very long, snowy, and difficult to endure. The winter season is particularly tricky for drivers of the Quebec territory. Weather conditions can take us by surprise and make driving very dangerous. We are suddenly confronted with snow, cold, freezing rain, black ice, gusts of wind and poor visibility. Consequently, it is important to adopt safe driving habits during the winter.
Get winter tires.
One of the most important things you can do to keep your vehicle safe as winter approaches is to install good winter tires. Please note that Quebec requires vehicles on its roads to have winter tires. Tires known as “4-season tires” are not considered a replacement for winter tires, and won’t allow you to escape this obligation.
As of 2019, Quebec has also moved up the December 15 deadline to December 1st for the mandatory installation of winter tires. If you need to have them installed by a mechanic, don't wait until the last minute to make an appointment, since garages are overloaded near this date. Section 270 of the Highway Safety Code provides for a monetary penalty if you do not comply to this winter rule.
Adapt your speed.
It is also important to note that in Quebec, it is essential to adjust our driving to the changing weather. Did you know that it is possible to receive a ticket with 2 demerit points if you drive 50km/h on a road with a 50km/h speed limit? Section 330 of the Highway Safety Code requires all drivers to reduce their speed when visibility is reduced due to darkness, fog, rain, snow, or when the road is slippery or not completely clear.
Keep a safe distance.
The Highway Safety Code also imposes on us the obligation to keep a prudent and reasonable distance, considering our speed, the density of the traffic, the weather conditions and the state of the road. We find this obligation in section 335 of the law. It is even more important to take this obligation seriously during the winter. Our distances must be greater because of slippery roads and reduced visibility due to snow. Drivers who do not respect this article expose themselves to a ticket with 2 demerit points, in addition to a potential road accident.
Please contact us if you have any questions regarding your obligations on the road during the winter. Our lawyers will be pleased to answer your questions.