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Ontario Highway Traffic Act

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Definition of "lane" for 142(1)
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2008 10:33 pm 
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Hello people,

HTA 142 (1) says:
Quote:
The driver or operator of a vehicle upon a highway before turning to the left or right at any intersection or into a private road or driveway or from one lane for traffic to another lane for traffic ...


I could not find the legal definition of "lane" in the act.
Does it have to be marked?

Please help.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2008 11:03 pm 
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Tell us what happened to you?

I will guess that the answer is no. You would have to read the entire Act, all the regulations, find case law with other examples, and/or use a dictionary definition to find the correct answer, though.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 12:47 am 
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A collision in a bend in the road.
The officer that arrived later decided to charge me with "turn not in safety" under 142(1).

My point is that 142(1) is not applicable as it is very specific about the turns and none of them is applicable to a bend in the road.

They may claim that my car protruded into the opposite line of traffic. However:

- The other sections of the HTA that mention lanes talk about "marked lanes" (141(2), 142(6)) "clearly marked lanes" (149(1), 154(1), 154.1(1), 154.2(1)), etc.

- Sections that deal with the absense of markings use the word "line" instead of "lane". E.g., 141(1)(a), 149(1), 150(1)(b)

So, yes, I've read the act.

I could not find any relevant case law that mentioned "lane" when one wasn't marked. In particular, all the cases I found on CanLII used "lane" when the same direction was implied.

In contrast, R. v. Smith 1996, R. v. Elias (D.J.) 2003, and others mention "centre line".


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 12:53 am 
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Also 186(1) mentions "left lane".
It is obvious that it talks about same-direction lanes (otherwise the left lane would be oncoming traffic)


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 1:02 am 
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Interesting case. Keep searching case law and you might find something to help you.

So, you're traveling on a road with no centre line and the cop claims you went into the oncoming lane of traffic while rounding a bend in the roadway and caused a collison?

If so, then you're right, the section yo were charged under does not apply.

Do you know how to fight this win?

Was there any injuries?

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 1:46 am 
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Hi lawmen, thanks for your reply.

lawmen wrote:
Interesting case. Keep searching case law and you might find something to help you.

Gladly but I feel I'm not getting any relevant info from CanLII.
Any suggestions where to look? Or maybe I'm searching incorrect terms?

lawmen wrote:
So, you're traveling on a road with no centre line and the cop claims you went into the oncoming lane of traffic while rounding a bend in the roadway and caused a collison?

More or less. Cop's notes say I "cut the corner". Interesting since he arrived an hour after the fact.

lawmen wrote:
If so, then you're right, the section yo were charged under does not apply.
Do you know how to fight this win?

I am not sure.

lawmen wrote:
Was there any injuries?

No, only damage to the cars. Other party panicked and called the police.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 2:04 am 
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Try the Supreme Court of Canada for caselaw with respect to lanes.

When did you get the ticket?

Have you sent in the notice to defend yet?

I don't think the charge will stick as it doesn't apply, in my view, as you also mentioned.

This is not a case involving turning. I think he may've had to charge you with careless driving in such a case. But even that wouldn't stick.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 10:39 am 
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lawmen wrote:
Try the Supreme Court of Canada for caselaw with respect to lanes.

Nothing relevant on csc.lexum.umontreal.ca
The only case I found that mentions an unmarked centre line, does not use the word "lane" (Armand v. Carr, [1926] S.C.R. 575)

No legal definition of "lane" was given but then, I did not expect the SC to concern itself with such issues.

lawmen wrote:
When did you get the ticket?
Have you sent in the notice to defend yet?

Quite a while ago. I am going to trial soon.

lawmen wrote:
I don't think the charge will stick as it doesn't apply, in my view, as you also mentioned.
This is not a case involving turning. I think he may've had to charge you with careless driving in such a case. But even that wouldn't stick.

That's what I thought, but I wanted to be sure.
I just have to find the best way to argue this.

Thank you.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 11:59 am 
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Better question: What evidence did the officer have that you were in the wrong lane. What about the other driver???????

You got a case........keep digging.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 2:16 pm 
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This is really a great example to request disclosure including a request for an explanation and clarification of the charge. Let them do the work. They must bring home to the accused what he did wrong. You are asking "what did I do?" and "How are you going to prove it?"

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 2:49 pm 
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ticketcombat wrote:
This is really a great example to request disclosure including a request for an explanation and clarification of the charge. Let them do the work. They must bring home to the accused what he did wrong. You are asking "what did I do?" and "How are you going to prove it?"

Unfortunately, it is a bit too late for that.
I won't go into too much details (representation gone wrong) but basically what I have now is disclosure (cop's notes, ticket and accident report), a trial in a couple of weeks and some research I managed to do.

I think I have a case but I'll be grateful for suggestions how to argue it.
I do appreciate all the help I'm getting on this forum (I wish I found it earlier). thank you!


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 3:35 pm 
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You said there was no accident i.e., damage or injury?

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 3:39 pm 
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lawmen wrote:
You said there was no accident i.e., damage or injury?

Did I? I'm sorry, English is not my native language and I am even less familiar with legal terms.

When I said "collision" I meant an accident.
There was no injury but there was damage to the vehicles.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 3:47 pm 
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Actually, it's my mistake. I just re-read the thread. You did say damage to the car, no injuries. Sorry.

The cop is clueless, or gave you a major break. The turn offence doesn't apply. You crossed into another lane, even though it has no lines. An accident occurred. In my opinion he had to charge you with careless driving, but he didn't.

Careless is not easy to prove. If you had a moment of distraction while driving, it is not careless driving. They must prove your driving was careless or reckless.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 7:04 pm 
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I would be guess that HTA 148 applies to the description provided.

Passing meeting vehicles - vehicle on highway meeting another shall turn out to the right from centre of roadway, allowing the other vehicle one-half of the roadway

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Above is merely a suggestion/thought and in no way constitutes legal advice or views of my employer. www.OHTA.ca


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