Why aren't radar detectors legal in Ontario? | Page 4 | GTAMotorcycle.com

Why aren't radar detectors legal in Ontario?

Allistonfjr

Well-known member
So, where exactly is your line between "Nanny state" and "realistic limits"?

And do you think everyone shares your answer to that answer?
Lets go with 90 on country roads and 115 on highways. Realistic enough? Out towards Bayfield and Goderich the limits are 90. Strangely it seems to work. They must be better drivers out on Ontario's west coast.
Your correct though. Can never make everyone happy.
 

Brian P

Well-known member
Moderator
Site Supporter
Traffic engineers already know how to properly set speed limits ... provided that politics doesn't interfere.

Except in very limited circumstances where special hazards exist (i.e. school zones during school hours ... NOT the entire city all the time because there is a school somewhere in it that might have kids there at 2 AM), speed limits should be set to the 85th-percentile speed of natural traffic flow (speed limit signs temporarily removed and with no visible enforcement, not during inclement weather, not during rush hour congestion, not within a certain distance of an intersection, etc), and the enforcement limit should be set at the 90th-percentile.

People do not naturally drive X km/h above whatever speed limit. They go a speed that seems rational for the circumstances. In Germany on unrestricted sections of autobahn, people do not drive infinity plus 20 km/h. They, for the most part, drive in the 120 to 140 km/h range ... little different from here. The police enforce lane behaviour, signalling, proper lane changing, etc ... not speed. Sure, there is the occasional high-end Mercedes or BMW cruising at 180 km/h. For every one of those, there are at least 10 each of VW Golf non-turbo diesel, Ford Mondeo towing a trailer bigger than the car (restricted to 100 km/h with a trailer and strictly right lane only), Renault Twingo, and vans. Lots of vans. The european version of my van is a Fiat Ducato, and they have a 2.3 diesel. All of those other vehicles ... aren't fast. A Fiat Panda will happily cruise at 120 km/h, so that's what they do.

Keep in mind that on the autobahns, they apply speed limits with some logic, and lots of them have variable speed limits (indicated by overhead LED sign boards). Approaching a junction? Down to 120 km/h. Clear of the junction? Cancellation. Bad weather? I saw as low as 80 km/h in heavy rain, and visibility was bad enough that it made sense. Traffic jam up ahead? (large sections of the autobahn system, if not all of it, are monitored, so they know) The limit steps down ... 120 a couple km back ... then 100 ... then 80 as you approach the congestion.

If you try to do more than 120 km/h then you'll have to slow down before every junction ... or you can set cruise control at 120 and not have the speed yo-yo up and down as much. And you had better slow down when that sign board say 120, because there's a fair chance of a speed camera on the back side of it.

Secondary roads, default speed limit is 100 km/h in Germany and Austria, 90 km/h most other places. The countryside is dotted with little villages every 3 - 5 km (because the farmers wanted to be close to their fields, and close to the village market, before motor vehicles existed, and all those villages are still there!). Default speed limit in town (50 km/h) starts at the edge of the built up area (not hundreds of metres before like they do here) and you had better do that before you get to the sign ... speed cameras ... the tolerance zone for slowing down is the thickness of the paint on that sign. So you end up going 100 for a minute or two then back to 50 for a minute or two.

Practically every intersection is a roundabout, and that is a natural slow-down area as well ... as it should be. There's less incentive to drive high speeds when you have to slow down every couple of minutes for roundabouts and villages anyhow.

Italy doesn't have the variable speed limits in any place that I've seen, and their countryside speed limits are seemingly random and frequently absurdly low. German, Austrian, and Swiss drivers follow rules because the rules that they're used to, make sense. Italian drivers flout them ... Mexican drivers flout them even more ...
 

Riceburner

Well-known member
.....It's way more relaxing, isn't it? I often laugh at the people out there who will weave through traffic and take every opportunity to gain 12" from the car beside them, but more often than not end up stopped at the same traffic light as you 5 minutes later.
Not really, going with the flow of highway traffic is better. Kept watching my rear view more than normal, watching out for anyone going faster that may not be paying attention. Maybe it's from riding, but I prefer to be on the quicker/medium side of traffic flow. Setting the cruise at 115-120 is probably best.

On the street, yeah, ppl weave to get ahead and I pull up to them at the next light. Though, have been on the other side too trying to make time....sometimes it gets you ahead, soometimes not.
 

PrivatePilot

Ironus Butticus
Site Supporter
Not really, going with the flow of highway traffic is better.
If I can "go with the flow" without needing to constantly change lanes to accomplish it, I'll do the same. If, as is often the case, in order to maintain ~120 on the 401 you are constantly changing lanes and speeding up and slowing down as you experience other vehicles driving slower than you, I find it far more relaxing to just set the cruise at a speed that lets others pass me vs me needing to constantly pass others.
 

J_F

gringo diablo
Site Supporter
If I can "go with the flow" without needing to constantly change lanes to accomplish it, I'll do the same. If, as is often the case, in order to maintain ~120 on the 401 you are constantly changing lanes and speeding up and slowing down as you experience other vehicles driving slower than you, I find it far more relaxing to just set the cruise at a speed that lets others pass me vs me needing to constantly pass others.
generally agree with this
but would clarify (IMO) this is a problem between KW and Durham
the rest of the 401, and other 400 series roads outside the GTA
function much better

and volume of traffic isn't the only factor
 

Flywheel

Well-known member
Placeholder for autobahn essay, which was quite informative.
With all that regulation, I think we could safely call Germany (puts on sunglasses)...*a neiney state!*
 

hedo2002

Well-known member
Site Supporter
For all those clamouring for a "higher" limit especially on the 400 series...

News flash, as a former copper, unless there were exceptional circumstances, (kids getting out of or going to school), the rule of thumb was always give a 0 - 14 Km/h "grace" So if you set your cruise at 110 your good to go. 15 - 19 over I usually, (unless attitude given by the driver), gave a verbal warning. At 20+ over, get out your wallet....lol

Now. as a regular driver, who travels approx 60 km each way, for my daily commute. I set the cruise at 110 on the 401. I can comfortably sit in the right lane, let others pass on the left, for the most part, people can merge, as I am not increasing or decreasing my speed.

As Private Pilot eluded to it can make a considerable fuel consumption to go much faster. I tried a few times and set my cruise at 100 km. I could easily get 4 days commute comfortably per tank. At 110, I can get approx 3.5 days of commute, but just barely. At 120 km, I can barely get 3 days in, the low fuel light comes on about 3/4 of the way home on the third day.
 

Trials

Well-known member
Brother in law got pulled over on Saturday for doing 4 kph over the limit in an 80 kph zone on highway #7. Apparently he gave the cop attitude but drove away without being issued a ticket just the same, probably good luck rather then good management :/ but can you imagine the mentality of a police officer actually doing something like that. What a hero.
 

Mad Mike

Well-known member
So, where exactly is your line between "Nanny state" and "realistic limits"?

And do you think everyone shares your answer to that answer?

That's the issue. Nobody is ever going to be happy. Make the speed limit 150 and a subset will be happy, but many will still drive much slower, there will be more accidents, and they will be more severe.

Keep the limits where they are or maybe slightly higher (110 on 400 series and 90 on secondaries would be realistic IMHO) and we are at "nanny state" according to some.

Some suggest photo radar is an effective tool for punishing gross speeders. Others immediately call it a cash grab.

It goes on and on.
I'm old enough to remember when 40x speed limits were 70mph, and highways were 60mph. In the 70's MTO converted to metric and lowered 40x speeds to 100kmh (62mph) and highways to 80kmh (50mph) as a way to conserve fuel during the 70's energy crisis-- not for safety. There MTO never found evidence that speed reduction had an impact on road safety for light vehicles.

I think 130 for the 40x highways and 100 for regular highways is reasonable, those worked till the mid '70's when cars, light trucks and many bikes handling started depreciating above 100kmh. Today's vehicles are much easier to drive.
 

Mad Mike

Well-known member
Brother in law got pulled over on Saturday for doing 4 kph over the limit in an 80 kph zone on highway #7. Apparently he gave the cop attitude but drove away without being issued a ticket just the same, probably good luck rather then good management :/ but can you imagine the mentality of a police officer actually doing something like that. What a hero.
Same thing happened to my son a few years back. He worked nights and was returning home at 4:30AM, he was stopped by YRP on Hwy 7 near 48 in a brief stretch that drops to 50 -- they ticketed him at the '50 begins' sign for 8 over.

It's understandable, YRP have a quota (ooops .. "performance expectations" ) that each cop bring in about 150 tickets per year. It's a quantity not quality game, so hanging out at the bottom of hills, and under transition signs is where they find the low hanging fruit.
 

Rob MacLennan

Well-known member
Moderator
Site Supporter
Brother in law got pulled over on Saturday for doing 4 kph over the limit in an 80 kph zone on highway #7. Apparently he gave the cop attitude but drove away without being issued a ticket just the same, probably good luck rather then good management :/ but can you imagine the mentality of a police officer actually doing something like that. What a hero.
Such stops are sometimes an effort to generate probable cause for a search, DUI check, or other similar reasons. If a cop's "radar" is going off telling him that there's something up, he might make such a stop.
 

Trials

Well-known member
Such stops are sometimes an effort to generate probable cause for a search, DUI check, or other similar reasons. If a cop's "radar" is going off telling him that there's something up, he might make such a stop.
Ya, they probably thought he was high because he was driving too slow :lmao:
 

kiwi

Well-known member
Brother in law got pulled over on Saturday for doing 4 kph over the limit in an 80 kph zone on highway #7. Apparently he gave the cop attitude but drove away without being issued a ticket just the same, probably good luck rather then good management :/ but can you imagine the mentality of a police officer actually doing something like that. What a hero.
what kind of car? Something like a blacked out Civic? or regular minivan? This (small) speeding infringement gave the cop a reason to pull him over and allow him to check for other things..
 

Trials

Well-known member
what kind of car? Something like a blacked out Civic? or regular minivan? This (small) speeding infringement gave the cop a reason to pull him over and allow him to check for other things..
F150 pickup truck, no window tint, clean driving record, 67 y.o. drives a school bus for a living now and has held an A license forever. Absolutely not a high profile suspect and they could have discovered all that just by running his plate#.

... and he doesn't smoke anything.
 

J_F

gringo diablo
Site Supporter
Brother in law got pulled over on Saturday for doing 4 kph over the limit in an 80 kph zone on highway #7. Apparently he gave the cop attitude but drove away without being issued a ticket just the same, probably good luck rather then good management :/ but can you imagine the mentality of a police officer actually doing something like that. What a hero.
seems like a waste of resources

cops are people like anyone else
prone to error
and have BS going on that you don't know about

leaving without a ticket after giving attitude is a good outcome
 

happycrappy

Well-known member
Site Supporter
Because the speed limits are too low.

In most of continental Europe, general motorway speed limits are 130 km/h, and that is generally followed. As far as I know, Ontario has the lowest speed limit on such roads. It is tied for that honour with some other places that are much more congested and with much shorter travel distances between cities (e.g. Japan).

In Germany, secondary roads mostly have 100 km/h limits and they are generally followed. Roads with lower limits are usually in the mountains and are tight and narrow, and the limits generally make sense for the conditions. In Italy, there is no rhyme nor reason to the speed limits on secondary roads (and the limits are mostly too low, sometimes ridiculously so), and they are widely ignored ... only followed when passing the speed cameras, which there are plenty of. (Italian driving style is foot to the floor in a Fiat Panda)

If everyone ignores the speed limit then everyone isn't wrong ... the speed limit is wrong.
Just as an added consideration that we don't often hear in the comparisons to other places, is the relative size and weight of the trucks on our highways. Most states, and definitely in Europe they do not carry anywhere near the weight we do here. Not sure I'd want to see a 130000 plus pound truck mingling at 130kph. Enforcement is another consideration; typically in the US they do not enjoy the buffer we get with running over the limit - Do 3 mph over and you're getting snagged.
 

Mad Mike

Well-known member
Traffic engineers already know how to properly set speed limits ... provided that politics doesn't interfere.

Except in very limited circumstances where special hazards exist (i.e. school zones during school hours ... NOT the entire city all the time because there is a school somewhere in it that might have kids there at 2 AM), speed limits should be set to the 85th-percentile speed of natural traffic flow (speed limit signs temporarily removed and with no visible enforcement, not during inclement weather, not during rush hour congestion, not within a certain distance of an intersection, etc), and the enforcement limit should be set at the 90th-percentile.

People do not naturally drive X km/h above whatever speed limit. They go a speed that seems rational for the circumstances. In Germany on unrestricted sections of autobahn, people do not drive infinity plus 20 km/h. They, for the most part, drive in the 120 to 140 km/h range ... little different from here. The police enforce lane behaviour, signalling, proper lane changing, etc ... not speed. Sure, there is the occasional high-end Mercedes or BMW cruising at 180 km/h. For every one of those, there are at least 10 each of VW Golf non-turbo diesel, Ford Mondeo towing a trailer bigger than the car (restricted to 100 km/h with a trailer and strictly right lane only), Renault Twingo, and vans. Lots of vans. The european version of my van is a Fiat Ducato, and they have a 2.3 diesel. All of those other vehicles ... aren't fast. A Fiat Panda will happily cruise at 120 km/h, so that's what they do....
I agree with your observation, but not the argument that it's portable to Canada or the USA. I spent a lot of time in Germany between 1985 and 2005 and logged thousands of miles on Autobahns. Germans drive at the speed of the cars they own, you won't see an A4, 911, MB200 tooling along at 120... ever. When I was there I drove a '99 MB 220D it cruised nicely at 180 and that was my place, Trabants puttered along at 80kmh. High speeds work when drivers are educated and respectful of right lane laws, which wile on the books here are not enforced.

Now come to the Americas where any pickup and most tiny cars have enough power to cruise all day at 160, and most are capable of much higher cruising speeds. I don't think that would work.
 

Baggsy

Well-known member
Site Supporter
I tried PP's system, modified it a little and it worked very nicely for the drive home from Toronto today.

Usually, I get stuck behind dozens of people blocking the passing lane, but not so much this time.

I'm not sure if PP does this, but when I pass someone, I pass them, rather than mosey on by, then I get back over and resume my previous speed.

I also try and allow trucks that are building up steam room to pull into the passing lane, I can pass them in two seconds once they pull back in.
 

hedo2002

Well-known member
Site Supporter
Exactly, I knew, at times that I was at the most going to issue a verbal warning, (Pre computers, so no record of it), BUT, I did get many suspended drivers, impaired etc, from it. If they were clean, they were on their way within 3 minutes. I would then often see the same cars at different times in the same area, except they were now doing VERY close to the limit. So, it did have a positive outcome, in that they felt good for not getting a ticket, but also tended to obey the limits, nmoreso.


Such stops are sometimes an effort to generate probable cause for a search, DUI check, or other similar reasons. If a cop's "radar" is going off telling him that there's something up, he might make such a stop.
 

Top Bottom