Toronto Criminal Lawyer Explains Why You Can Get Charged For Leaving Snow On Your Car

It might seem silly, or even illegal, but yes, police can charge you for leaving snow and ice on your car. After Toronto’s recent ice storm, many citizens began a miserable Monday digging out their cars. For some though, they didn’t do good enough of a job.

Peel Regional Police have been warning drivers to take care when clearing snow and ice off their vehicles. There have been a number of incidents in the past few days results in tickets over snow left on cars.

Our Toronto criminal lawyers explain that it’s a real thing, and this is why police ticket people for it.

Simply put, drivers need to ensure their windshield is clear before driving. Leaving snow or ice, even partially, on the windshield limits visibility. Motorists can be charged under the Highway Traffic Acts for driving without a clear view. It’s a charge that carries a fine of $110.

Section 74 of the Ontario Highway Traffic Act states, “No person shall drive a motor vehicle upon a highway unless the windshield and the windows on either side of the compartment containing the steering wheel are in such a condition as to afford the driver a clear view to the front and side of the motor vehicle.”

So next time the Greater Toronto Area has some snow, remember what the lawyers and police said and clear it completely off your car before hitting the road.

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About the author

I am one of the senior partners at Bytensky Shikhman, a criminal litigation firm in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. In my 25+ year career, I have conducted numerous trials and appeals before all levels of Court in Ontario, defending just about every type of charge in our criminal law. I am also an Adjunct Professor of Trial Advocacy at Osgoode Hall Law School and currently the Treasurer of the Criminal Lawyers' Association of Ontario. I am also an Adjunct Professor for Trial Advocacy at Osgoode Hall Law School, York University and a regular lecturer and placement supervisor for Osgoode's Intensive Programme in Criminal Law.
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