Daytime driving lights soon law

Ryan Ross
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Drivers whose daytime running lights aren't working, or who have disabled them, will face a $50 fine after new legislation is passed.

It will soon be easier to spot oncoming traffic on Island roads thanks to legislation tabled this week that will force all vehicles to either have daytime driving lights or run with their lights on.

Transportation Minister Robert Vessey said for whatever reason some vehicles have daytime running lights that don’t work or are unhooked.

“It’s a very dangerous thing,” he said.

The proposed changes to the Highway Traffic Act will require any vehicle made after Nov. 30, 1989, to use daytime running lights during daylight.

Under the proposed legislation, any vehicles made before that will either have to have daytime running lights or drive with their headlights on during the day.

Drivers who disobey the new rules face fines of up to $500.

The legislation will also prohibit the use of any daytime driving lights in colours other than white or amber.

Farm tractors, special mobile equipment and vehicles registered outside of P.E.I. will all be exempt.

Vessey said it will be up to motor vehicle owners to ensure their lights are running during the day.

“If you’re running a vehicle without them, now it’s going to be illegal.”

The proposed legislation will also deal with licence plate covers that restrict visibility because Vessey said law enforcement officials have complained some of the information on them, such as registration stickers, can be concealed.

“It’s just minor housekeeping of the act and making things safer,” Vessey said.

Drivers who have anything covering the plate in whole or in part face fines up to $500.

Under the new legislation, there is also a section that deals with vehicles that drive from the right-hand side.

Those will be restricted to commercial use with any right-hand driving vehicles that were already on Island roads grandfathered in.

Geographic location: Iceland, P.E.I.

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Recent comments

  • Michael Haynes
    June 23, 2014 - 09:25

    The National Highway Transportation And Safety Administration, after 16 years of lighting studies sent out a press release in 2008 stating that Daytime lighting represented no Statistically Significant advantage to safety. Daytime headlights also reduce fuel economy from 2-20% depending on the vehicle. It has been estimated that daytime headlights in the USA contribute 8 billion lbs of CO2 to the atmosphere each year. So the islands are enacting legislation that does nothing to add to the safety of motorists and adds lots of extra CO2 to the atmosphere. Makes sense to me.

  • Greg
    April 14, 2014 - 13:32

    This province is so out of touch in so many regards, this is just one more. Do communities not realize that by enforcing highway traffic act, this can provide an excellent source of income, instead of placing the burden on over taxed home owners. Perhaps the lower taxes would encourage people to live and work, and yes stay here.

  • Heather Lavern
    April 12, 2014 - 11:46

    I think this is ironic considering my light went out and the next day im in the paper .I am the owner of this and the person light went out 3 days ago today.its been bothering me since .thanks for putting me in the paper it will be in shop on Monday thanks...too funny oops

  • city resident
    April 12, 2014 - 00:43

    About time this looked into. I drive daily from town to the east and see numberous cars with no headlights on in the early mornings. Earlier this week there was alot of fog and I couldn't believe the cars that had no DEL on or one better not turning their regular headlights on so drivers could see them from behind. Same as around the city in the nights , drivers with no tail lights on and driving around the city. All i cab figure is people do not look at their dash , as far as I know the dash lights would not be on if the headlights were not turned on,. My last 3 cars have had a headlight sentinel on the dash that tells my car that it is dark/dusk and turns them on automatically. Maybe all cars should be made with this option that way it would be safer? I know a lot of mornings/evenings I would have thought it was alright to not have my driving lights activated.

    • Speaking of laws
      April 12, 2014 - 19:38

      What about the tint on most cars alright for some I guess and in response to driving east in the morning it's no lights or bright lights wake up people adjust your high beams

  • Dundas Sue
    April 11, 2014 - 22:42

    It's about time. I dont understand anyone being against this; you dont have to do anything; shift into drive and go m- and if it is snowing turn on your night time lights so you have tail lights. Drive to be seen and drive alive. The kind of lights youh have and not disconnecting daytime lights should ne part of the yearly inspection. There is no credible reason not to do this - its long past time for this law.

  • Whiners
    April 11, 2014 - 15:21

    1-Get in your car 2-Buckle up 3-Turn your lights on 4-Drive Pretty confusing right?

  • david
    April 11, 2014 - 12:29

    Now if they would just make cellphone jammers mandatory on all vehicles it would solve the texting while driving issue. For a $5 item this problem could easily be fixed and solved.

    April 11, 2014 - 12:10

    This has been law on all cars in Canada since 1990, this will only affect those people who, for some strange reason, go through the trouble to disconnect theirs. How many of them can there be on PEI?

  • lights
    April 11, 2014 - 10:52

    great idea at dusk your lights would be already on

  • Bill Davis
    April 11, 2014 - 10:45

    Rylan, you are the stupid one. It has been federal law for years that vehicles have to have daytime driving lights. It is because of idiots like you who think it is a stupid law so they disable their daytime lights. I would think a moron like you also think seatbelts are a bad idea. I just hope you are not a driver because i would not want to be on the same highway as you.

  • Joe Smith
    April 11, 2014 - 10:42

    Shows the mentality here on PEI yet again with these comments. Ever drive during the day in a snowstorm? Ever drive during the morning hours when it is foggy out? Be nice to see other vehicles on the road, this makes great sense but those complaining on here are worried about their '57 Chevy not meeting the specs.

  • Local Driver
    April 11, 2014 - 10:22

    That's great.......except for Chrysler/Dodge/Jeep vehicles. Their daytime running lights are way too bright as it is. I wish Chrysler would rectify that. Don't ever buy one of those. Jeeps are UGLY too!

  • Captain Canuck
    April 11, 2014 - 10:15

    Why complain? Let it be a dumb law. Just drive with your lights on. Problem solved.

  • fred
    April 11, 2014 - 09:41

    This is the most ridiculous thing i have ever heard of ! Having 27 elected members in a province of less than 140,000 population (and shrinking ) they definitely have away too much time on their hands. Some even can find time to travel around the world and watch $40.00. movies on the tax payers dime .Time to cut this 3 ring circus down to about 12 elected members and give them some real issues to amuse themselves with .

  • MFH
    April 11, 2014 - 09:17

    I have seen numerous vehicles in the last few years with blue, green, red bulbs in their signal lights. According to the Highway Traffic Act and other laws this is considered as being impersonation of a police vehicle. Do the police pay attention to this ?

  • don
    April 11, 2014 - 08:49

    for real???, stupid law. well then i can see a lot of drivers getting off the road as you both said if you can't see a car coming it is the same as a motorcycle. it is called opening your eyes and off the book , or radio etc.

    • Angus MacTavish
      April 11, 2014 - 10:55

      Don, why does it not surprise me that you would be against something that enhances safety on the road? The way your paranoid mind works you probably think it is some kind of Liberal plot. In case you are wondering the law has been on the books for years. Have you ever wondered why all these vehicles have their lights on during the daytime?

  • Billy
    April 11, 2014 - 08:38

    Strange new law regarding daytime running lights, but a good one. I thought it was already a law for newer vehicles. You cannot buy a new vehicle without daytime running lights in canada and if you purchase a vehicle in the US and bring it to canada you are required to have daytime runnuing lights installed. For anyone who actually does some driving out there, these are good new laws.

  • IslandTime
    April 11, 2014 - 08:16

    About time. Actually thought this would have already been law, since cars have come equipped with daytime running lights for years and years. Don't understand the negative comments for a safty feature that is standard on 95% of the cars on the road today.

  • mary
    April 11, 2014 - 08:13

    have this posted for all cars prior to crossing the bridge this is law island can use funds from cva's not abiding by new law.

    • borden resident
      April 12, 2014 - 16:36

      Actually, PEI is one of the last, if not the last, province/territory in Canada to adopt such a law. Transport Canada has made it law for selling any vehicles since 1989 to have DRL's installed. But there was nothing to prevent someone from disabling them. So all the other provinces/territories brought in legislation over the last 25 years to make it illegal. Good to see PEI is finally CATCHING UP. Dragging its heels as always. PEI has always been at the back of the pack on laws about bootlegging and drunk driving, and access to abortions, mental health, addictions counseling, etc. It's quite strange why we citizens continue to allow the idiot hicks sitting in the legislature to keep this province behind the 8 ball.

  • for real???
    April 11, 2014 - 07:22

    Makes lots of sense, fined for not having your lights on during the day?!? How about all drivers who can't see an oncoming car during the day, stop driving? I mean really, simply ridiculous

  • stupid law
    April 11, 2014 - 07:19

    The daytime light law makes no sense, if you can't see oncoming traffic in the daytime, you shouldn't be on the road, just sayin'

  • Rylan
    April 11, 2014 - 06:54

    What a stupid idea to come up with!!!! Vessy, why would you come up with such a foolish idea as making it law to have your lights on in the day? I know why, the extra $50 fine is why. The police can't even come close to enforcing the amount of laws already in place so I'd say it's time to concentrate on more important issues. If you cant see a 3000lb plus vehicle in the daytime that hasn't got it's lights on then you should not be driving on the road at any time because you are blind as a bat. Don't even bother to argue that it's a safety issue either because that is bull.... Someone drop off some smelling salts to the ministers at province house because these people are asleep at the wheel.

    • Stan Hope
      April 11, 2014 - 12:07

      Re: Rylan do you drive , do you ever leave your home ? First of all idiot comments about roundabouts now idiot comments about making Island roads safer for everyone.Some drivers have a hard time seeing a big orange school bus with flashing lights let alone your 3ooo lb whatever.You come across as a typical aggressive,ignorant, rude Island driver who doesn't know the rules of the road, probably talks on the phone & doesn't care about anyone least of all yourself ... nuff said , I've wasted enough time on you.

    • huh
      April 11, 2014 - 15:22

      you know, in a strange twist of irony, those posters who are calling others dumb are usually the ones who are out to lunch. First, mandatory Daytime Running lights are not specific to PEI. Second, DRL equipped cars have been mandatory in Canada for 25 years. Surely you must have noticed most cars already have their lights on during the day? Third, its a Transport Canada recommended practice to enact this law as its proven this improves safety. Finally, its not that you can't see oncoming cars at all without their lights on, its that you can see them sooner. That improves reaction times etc etc etc.