The Strathroy-Caradoc Police Service monitors, enforces, and investigates road safety issues throughout Strathroy-Caradoc and works to improve road safety on an ongoing basis for our community. 

Traffic safety and enforcement (e.g. distracted driving, impaired driving, speeding, school zone violations, and commercial motor vehicle infractions) have been identified by the Strathroy-Caradoc community as a key priority for the SCPS.

Road Safety is a shared responsibility.

Learn more about how the SCPS is working to maintain traffic safety, and how you can contribute to road safety, by exploring the subject below:

Child Safety Seats 

Properly installed child safety seats save lives. It has been proven that using a child safety seat properly can reduce the chances of a child being killed or injured by 75%. The Strathroy-Caradoc Police Service (SCPS) has prepared the following tips and resources about child safety seats:

Does my child need to be in a safety seat?

In Ontario, it is legislated that all children that fall within these criteria must be secured in a car seat:

  • Children up to eight years old,
  • Children weighing less than 80 pounds. (36 kgs.), and/or
  • Children less than 4'9" (145 cm.) in height.
  • Some exemptions apply with taxis and vehicles transporting for hire.

Once the child has reached 80 pounds and is over 4' 9'', they may graduate to a seat belt position providing the seat belt sits at the correct spot across the child's chest.


Proper Safety Seat Installation

In order to properly restrain a child, you must ensure that:

  1. The child must be secured properly in a child safety seat.
  2. The child safety seat must be properly installed in the vehicle.

For specific information regarding your particular Infant/Child Restraint System (CRS), please contact your manufacturer who will be able to answer any questions pertaining to your CRS restraint system.


Safety Seat Resources

Ontario Ministry of Transportation's Choose the right child car seat 

Highway Traffic Act 

What is the Highway Traffic Act?

The Highway Traffic Act is provincial legislation that, among other things, regulates the classification of traffic offences. It applies to “highways,” which include a common or public highway, street, driveway, bridge, viaduct etc., any part of which is intended for use by the general public for the passage of vehicles. 

Traffic safety is one of the Strathroy-Caradoc Police Service's key priorities, and our officers are committed to conducting proactive traffic enforcement.


Authorization to Stop a Vehicle

An officer is authorized to pull over a vehicle to:

  • Determine if the driver has documents pertaining to operating the vehicle. This includes a driver's licence, vehicle permit, and valid insurance card.
  • Determine if any offence has been committed either provincially or criminally, to determine road-worthiness of a vehicle, or driver sobriety.


Charges under the Highway Traffic Act

There are two ways in which an officer can lay a charge under the Highway Traffic Act:

  • Provincial Offence Notice (PON), also known as a traffic ticket. A PON is given when there is a fine specified for an offence.
  • Summons to Defendant (directs a person to appear in court). A summons is issued when there is no fine set. This is due to the seriousness of the offence or possibly when a person has previous convictions for the same offence. If convicted, the fine would be determined by the Justice of the Peace.


Learn more about the Highway Traffic Act:

Impaired Driving 
What is impaired driving?

Impaired driving is the criminal offence of operating or having care or control of a motor vehicle while the person's ability to operate the motor vehicle is impaired by alcohol or a drug.

Additionally, there are legal and administrative blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limits. The maximum legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) for fully licensed drivers is to be under 80 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood, or a ‘BAC of 0.08 BAC.' Driving with a BAC of 0.08 or over is a criminal offence and the penalties are severe. In Ontario, you will also face serious consequences if your BAC is between 0.05 and 0.08. This is commonly referred to as the ‘warn range.'

If police determine that you are driving while impaired by any drug, including illegal drugs, cannabis, prescription, and over-the-counter medications, you will face severe consequences and criminal charges.

Drivers age 21 or under, novice drivers of any age (with G1, G2, M1, or M2 licences), and commercial motor vehicle operators must not have any presence of alcohol or drugs in their blood when behind the wheel. This is commonly referred to as the ‘zero tolerance' rule. If police determine that you have the presence of cannabis or alcohol in your system and/or that you are impaired by any substance, including illegal drugs, prescription drugs, or over-the-counter medications, you will face severe consequences and potential criminal charges.


Signs of an Impaired Driver:

According to MADD Canada, 10 possible signs of impaired driving are:

  1. Driving unreasonably fast, slow, or at an inconsistent speed
  2. Drifting in and out of lanes
  3. Tailgating and changing lanes frequently
  4. Making exceptionally wide turns
  5. Changing lanes or passing without sufficient clearance
  6. Overshooting or stopping well before stop signs or stop lights
  7. Disregarding signals and lights
  8. Approaching signals or leaving intersections too quickly or slowly
  9. Driving without headlights, failing to lower high beams, or leaving turn signals on
  10. Driving with windows open in cold or inclement weather


How does an Officer Determine if an Individual is Impaired by Alcohol?

An officer can arrest for impaired based on an assessment of driving and physical evidence. Officers may also conduct roadside testing to assist in the formation of grounds.

Mandatory Alcohol Screening: Upon conducting a lawful traffic stop, an officer in possession of a roadside screening device may make a valid breath demand and require the driver to participate in a roadside breath test.

Regardless of whether you have actually been drinking, an officer has the authority to demand a breath sample of any person that is currently driving or occupying the driver's seat of a vehicle. The process of providing a roadside sample also requires that the officer has the device with them. The process of providing a breath sample is brief and will only take a few minutes.

Refusing a demand for a breath sample is a criminal offence whether you have been drinking or not. Upon conviction, you could face the same penalties as if you had been driving over the legal BAC limit. In addition to the criminal charge, your licence will be suspended at the side of the road for 90 days and the vehicle you are driving will be impounded for seven days.


How does an Officer Determine if an Individual is Impaired by Drug?

Impaired driving is impaired driving, whether the impairment is by alcohol or by drug.

If an officer has formed the opinion that a driver is impaired by a drug, then an accredited Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) will be called in to determine if the driver is impaired. The DRE test involves a multi-step evaluation which includes:

  • Measuring the driver's blood pressure
  • Pupil size
  • Body temperature
  • Pulse
  • Eye's reaction to light
  • Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus test
  • Vertical Gaze Nystagmus test
  • Divided attention tests

The officer will make a demand for the driver to submit a urine sample. Failing to comply with this demand is also a criminal offence.


Penalties for Impaired Driving:

If police determine that you are driving while impaired you will face penalties immediately. You will also face additional consequences later if you are convicted in court. The penalties you face can vary depending on your age, licence type, the amount of alcohol or drugs in your system, and how many times you have been convicted.

Information about the penalties for impaired driving in Ontario can be found on the Ministry of Transportation website.


RIDE Programs:

The Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere (RIDE) program serves as a deterrent against drunk driving. RIDE spot checks are conducted year-round, with increased frequency during the holidays and long weekends.

Motorcycle Safety 

Riding a motorcyclist is riskier than driving a car. In fact, a crash as a motorcyclist is almost 30 times more likely to be fatal than as a motorist.

There are a number of steps you should take to stay safe as a motorcyclist.

Take a safety course

A safety course will teach you the rules of the road for motorcycles. You will also learn the appropriate actions to take in unpredictable riding situations that can arise. Driving a motorcycle requires skill and good judgment and a safety course can help you practice these. Consider an advanced riding course to learn collision avoidance maneuvers, advanced turning, control tips and braking techniques.


Gear up

No matter how hot it is outside, shorts, a T-shirt, and sandals are not proper riding attire. You can go for extreme protection with leathers or reinforced jackets, pants, and boots.

Glasses or goggles are a must if you have an open-faced helmet and to protect your hands, you should always wear gloves. In warm weather there is specially-designed gear that is intended for ventilation and cooling. And, it should go without saying, never ride without a DOT-approved helmet.


Inspect your ride

Make sure your motorcycle is in proper working order every time you go for a ride. This includes checking tire pressure, mirrors, and lights. Taking a quick walk around your bike will give you an idea if there are any loose bolts, leaks, or other potential mechanical hazards. Be diligent about regular care and maintenance.


Stay in the comfort zone

Know your abilities and make sure that neither your chosen route nor motorcycle is more than you can handle. Never ride beyond your skill level.


Use your head

Don’t rely solely on your mirrors to remain aware of what’s in your immediate riding space. It’s important to keep your head and eyes up while rounding corners and that the safest way to change lanes is to actually turn and look over your shoulder to make sure you are clear. You will also be able to get a feeling for whether other drivers are paying attention to you.


Watch the road

Pay attention to the road you are riding on. Err on the side of caution when going into curves; be vigilant for potential gravel or other unstable road conditions. Be careful when crossing railroad tracks because the paint can be slippery—the same goes for the white lines at stoplights.


No safety in numbers

Group rides can be risky due to riders covering too much of the roadway, riders driving side-by-side, and having a mix of riders with various skill levels. Hold a pre-ride meeting to talk about your ride strategy and to review hand signals. Select a skilled group lead and sweep. Keep your group size manageable. Ride only in a staggered formation. Leave a safe and proper following distance between motorcycles. Take breaks to prevent fatigue.


Shared responsibility

Road safety is a shared responsibility. As a car driver, be aware of your blind spots, slow down behind motorcycles, don’t tailgate, and use your turn signals. One of the most common causes of collisions between motorcycles and cars is the car driver turning left in front of the oncoming motorcycle, often due to speeding or lack of visibility. If driving a vehicle and making a turn or changing lanes, “look twice, turn once”.


Never drive impaired

Operating a motorcycle while impaired by alcohol, drugs, or fatigue, puts you and all road users at risk.

School Bus Safety 

School Bus Safety Tips for Motorists

Drive with extra care whenever you see a school bus in front of you or coming toward you. Ensure that you know the rules surrounding school buses:

  • When driving on a road WITHOUT a median: remember that if a school bus flashes its red lights, traffic in both directions must stop at least 20 metres from the bus. Travel may not resume until the school bus resumes motion and/or the lights have stopped flashing.
  • When driving on a road WITH a median: traffic coming from the opposite direction is not required to stop.


School Safety Tips for Parents

  • Remind your children to be extra careful when boarding or getting off the school bus.
  • Teach your children to look for traffic before crossing the road.
  • Remind your children to follow the school bus safety rules taught at school.
  • Encourage your child/children to help their school bus driver keep his/her attention on road safety by being good passengers.


Violating Laws Related to School Buses

Violating laws related to school buses will result in fines and demerit points. Learn more from Ontario's Highway Traffic Act.

Seat Belts 

What is the Law?

In Ontario, all motor vehicle drivers and passengers must wear a seat belt that is securely fastened and properly adjusted. 

As a driver of a motor vehicle, you can face a fine if you or anyone under the age of 16 is not wearing a seat belt or secured in a proper child car seat.

  • Fines range anywhere from $200 to $1,000.
  • You will receive two demerit points on your driving record.

Passengers over the age of 16 are responsible for buckling themselves up and will be held liable for not using or wearing a seat belt properly.


Who is Exempt from Using a Seat Belt

The law permits specific exemptions for certain vehicles/conditions.

Seat belts are not required in the following vehicles:

  • buses (including school buses);
  • other large commercial vehicles (over 4,536 kg) that don't require seat belts to be installed in rear seating positions at the time of manufacture;
  • vehicles that were manufactured in or imported into Canada before January 1, 1974;
  • vehicles manufactured without seat belt assemblies for each seating position.


Seat belts are not required for the following passengers:

  • people with medical certificates stating they are unable to wear a seat belt;
  • people engaged in work that requires them to exit from and re-enter the vehicle at frequent intervals (must travel less than 40 km/h);
  • a person in police custody while being transported, as well as police or peace officers while transporting a person in custody;
  • employees and agents of Canada Post delivering rural mail;
  • ambulance attendants and those being transported in the patient's compartment of an ambulance;
  • firefighters in the rear of a fire department vehicle while responding to an emergency;
  • taxi cab drivers while transporting a passenger for hire (when travelling alone in the vehicle, taxi cab drivers must wear a seat belt);
  • anyone legally driving a motor vehicle in reverse.