Canada's weirdest laws: don't text while ordering at a drive-through

An Alberta man got ticketed for texting while going through a Tim Horton’s drive-through. (Photo: iStock)
An Alberta man got ticketed for texting while going through a Tim Horton’s drive-through. (Photo: iStock)

No shoes? No problem. At least when it comes to driving your vehicle anywhere in Canada. Unlike most other places on the planet, driving barefoot is not against the law in the Great White North, but on the other hand, just make sure you honk your horn before passing another vehicle when you are driving in Prince Edward Island. That is the law there – although a dated one and one for which you probably would not be fined. New Brunswick has a similar rule.

The Highway Traffic Act does not even say a driver has to wear clothes while driving a vehicle. That’s the naked truth. The thing is that if what you’re wearing (or not wearing) causes you to drive dangerously or to cause an accident, you could find yourself dealing with a careless driving charge.

So many examples

There are definitely some wacky traffic laws on the books in Canadian provinces that will cause an eye roll but these strange laws are not likely being enforced these days. Still, it’s interesting to know they exist at all. For instance, even though the average speed limit on many Ontario roads is 80 km/h, cyclists are allowed to ride faster. So if you see your neighbour whizzing by you on his bike on your commute to work, chances are he had his Wheaties for breakfast!

And keeping with Ontario – before you hitch up your team of horses for a sleigh ride on any Ontario highway, just make sure you have the right number of bells on board. Failing to do so could get you a hefty $5 fine. Who knew?

Beware of texting while ordering

All provinces have laws against using hand held devices while driving, including texting but if you shoot a text to your significant other while you’re in the drive-through line, asking if he or she wants you to pick up a burger, you may end up like an Alberta man. He got ticketed for texting while going through a Tim Horton’s drive-through. The rule in every province says no texting unless your vehicle is in park.

Is this one even possible?

If you have an urge to grab onto another car on a highway in Saskatchewan, keep your windows up because “no person on a highway shall directly or by any attachment hold onto a moving vehicle other than the one in which the person is riding.”

No cutting corners allowed

As for Quebec, try cutting through a gas station or any parking light to bypass a red light and you may be in trouble.

Seriously, who came up these laws?

Also, something to keep in mind: If you’re ever in Sudbury, Ont. and using a bike to get around, you would be very wise to leave the siren at home because the law there says no sirens on bicycles. In Toronto, on the other hand, Sunday is not the best day to be dragging a dead horse down Yonge Street. So, you had better mark that task on your calendar for Saturday instead!
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