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Why the charge is 5 points

Posted: Wed Jun 18, 2008 2:57 pm
by racer
Driving through a railway crossing without stopping and looking both ways to ensure no train is coming is considered to endanger the life of the passengers. This is why it is such a serious offense. However, a two-strike policy is in effect, as a bus driver is legally not allowed to drive a bus in employ of a public office when he or she has 6 or more demerit points. Another Highway Traffic Act violation (even in his or her own car) will be grounds for dismissal from regular duties, as the 6-point limit will be reached. Same applies if the driver already has some demerit points, "failing to stop at an unprotected railway crossing" will be dismissed from the regular driving duties.

The wording is really unclear here though. Subsections 174 (1) and (2) of the Highway Traffic Act state "Driver of public vehicle or school bus failing to stop at railway crossings". "Public vehicle" may also mean government-owned vehicles (such as cars, minivans, SUVs, and light trucks used by different ministries), unless by "public vehicle" here is meant a vehicle any person may board, which seems to be the case.

Posted: Thu Jun 19, 2008 9:48 pm
by David Chatten
In many cases, the H.T.A. Section 174 ay not even apply.....

Section 1(1) of the H.T.A. includes:

“public vehicle” has the same meaning as in the Public Vehicles Act;

The P.V.A. defines a public vehicle as:

“public vehicle” means a motor vehicle operated on a highway by, for or on behalf of any person for the transportation for compensation of passengers, or passengers and express freight that might be carried in a passenger vehicle, but does not include the cars of electric or steam railways running only upon rails, taxicabs, car pool vehicles, nor motor vehicles operated solely within the limits of one local municipality;


The offence is quite serious, however it is not a dangerous as it would have been previously before we had gates and lights installed at most crossings in busy areas. Not a common charge, but when it is laid, most prosecutors are somewhat reluctant to negotiate to a lesser charge.

Posted: Fri Jun 20, 2008 12:54 pm
by racer
David Chatten wrote: “public vehicle” means a motor vehicle operated on a highway by, for or on behalf of any person for the transportation for compensation of passengers, or passengers and express freight that might be carried in a passenger vehicle, but does not include the cars of electric or steam railways running only upon rails, taxicabs, car pool vehicles, nor motor vehicles operated solely within the limits of one local municipality;
So a city bus or a schoolbus would be exempt from this as long as they do not make trips outside the municipality they serve?

Posted: Tue Jun 24, 2008 7:37 pm
by David Chatten
It would appear that way, but I would be carefull and not try to push it too far.

Posted: Tue Jun 24, 2008 8:30 pm
by hwybear
racer wrote:
David Chatten wrote: “public vehicle” means a motor vehicle operated on a highway by, for or on behalf of any person for the transportation for compensation of passengers, or passengers and express freight that might be carried in a passenger vehicle, but does not include the cars of electric or steam railways running only upon rails, taxicabs, car pool vehicles, nor motor vehicles operated solely within the limits of one local municipality;
So a city bus or a schoolbus would be exempt from this as long as they do not make trips outside the municipality they serve?
I can see the city bus being exempt with that definition, but how does school bus fall into this as per definition of a school bus?

Posted: Wed Jun 25, 2008 10:31 am
by racer
hwybear wrote: I can see the city bus being exempt with that definition, but how does school bus fall into this as per definition of a school bus?
Since a school bus is a special-purpose public vehicle, it may have special rules for operation.

Posted: Wed Jun 25, 2008 10:20 pm
by Reflections
racer wrote:
hwybear wrote: I can see the city bus being exempt with that definition, but how does school bus fall into this as per definition of a school bus?
Since a school bus is a special-purpose public vehicle, it may have special rules for operation.
School buses are not actually public vehicles. They are owned by private companies, Laidlaw, to name one. They are scrutinized due to their cargo, to the ends of the earth. My buddy runs a shop I get the details. Plus no bus is over 11 years old, usually ten, in regular use. Those 11 year old buses can be picked up cheap.