The Bill amends the Public Transportation and Highway Improvement Act in relation to standards for road maintenance in winter. New section 100 sets out a classification system for Ontario highways consisting of five classes of highways. The section classifies all 400 series highways, the QEW highway and highways 11 and 17 as Class 1 highways. The section also sets out the time within which snow must be removed from each class of highway after each snowfall. Class 1 highways have the strictest requirements for snow removal, requiring that the pavement be bare of snow within eight hours of the end of a snowfall.
Bill 59 2021
An Act to amend the Public Transportation and Highway Improvement Act to make northern Ontario highways safer
Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of Ontario, enacts as follows:
1 The Public Transportation and Highway Improvement Act is amended by adding the following section:
Winter road maintenance
100 (1) The Minister shall ensure that, after snow has fallen on a highway, the snow is removed in accordance with this section.
Class of highway
(2) For the purposes of this section, the following classes of highway are established:
1. Class 1, being any freeway, any highway with at least four lanes or any highway that, having regard to traffic volume or traffic quality, qualifies as a Class 1 highway.
2. Class 2, being any major highway that is not a Class 1 highway.
3. Class 3, being an intermediate highway.
4. Class 4, being a minor highway.
5. Class 5, being a local highway.
(3) The Minister shall make a regulation classifying all highways within the jurisdiction of the Ministry based on the quality and quantity of traffic on the highway and such other criteria as may be prescribed, subject to subsection (4).
Class 1 highways
(4) The following highways are Class 1 highways for purposes of this section:
1. Any highway that is a 400 series highway.
2. The QEW highway.
3. Highway 11 and highway 17, including portions of those highways that only have two lanes.
Bare pavement standard
(5) Every highway of the following class shall meet the following snow removal standard after the end of a snowfall:
1. Class 1 — the entire pavement shall be bare of snow within eight hours of the end of the snowfall.
2. Class 2 — the entire pavement shall be bare of snow within 16 hours of the end of the snowfall.
3. Class 3 — the entire pavement shall be bare of snow within 24 hours of the end of the snowfall.
4. Class 4 — a strip of 2.5 metres in the centre of the highway shall be bare of snow within 24 hours of the end of the snowfall.
5. Class 5 — the highway shall be plowed to a snow-packed driving surface within 24 hours of the end of the snowfall and sand shall be applied to improve friction.
2 This Act comes into force on a day to be named by proclamation of the Lieutenant Governor.
3 The short title of this Act is the Making Northern Ontario Highways Safer Act, 2021.