It’s possible that other speed limit increases could follow in the province. The 2019 online consultations found that 82% of respondents supported raising speed limits on more sections of 400 series highways.

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You might not have noticed, despite increased signage, but we’re now over a week into speed-limit increases on some Ontario highways.

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On April 22, speed limits were raised to 110km/h on the Queen Elizabeth Way from Hamilton to St. Catharines; on Hwy. 402 from London to Sarnia; on Hwy. 401 from Windsor to Tilbury; on Hwy. 404 from Newmarket to Woodbine on Hwy. 417 from Ottawa to the Ontario/Quebec Border; and on Hwy. 417 from Kanata to Arnprior. Additionally, increases are being trialed on two sections of highways in Northern Ontario.

“Our government continues to find new ways to make life easier and more convenient for families and businesses that depend on highways to get where they need to go,” Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation, said about the changes. “With road safety top of mind, these sections have been carefully selected based on their ability to accommodate higher speed limits,” she said.

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“We know how important it is that families traveling to get their kids to sporting events, and businesses looking to transport their goods, can get where they need to go more quickly and safely.”

Transport trucks are still limited to 105 km/h.

The changes followed pilot programs (on the QEW, Hwys. 402 and 417) and online consultations that began in 2019.

It’s possible that other speed-limit increases could follow in the province. The 2019 online consultations found that 82% of respondents supported raising speed limits on more sections of 400 series highways.

At the time the Ministry of Transportation Ontario said these particular pilot areas were chosen because they only required “minimal to no upgrades” and could “handle a 110 km/h speed limit.”

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It was also pointed out that the changes were in keeping with the norms of other provinces. Six other provinces in Canada have posted speed limits of 110 km/h or higher on some highways.

The MTO noted they have been “monitoring all raised speed limit sections for safety and operations, and observations indicate that the sections with a raised speed limit have been operating as expected. “Both the operating speeds and collision trends within these sections have remained comparable to other similar highway sections where speed limits remained unchanged at 100 km/h,” they said.

Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens said the changes are a “common sense approach which preserves safety while locally recognizing conditions across Ontario”

Dilkens said “adjusting the speed limits recognizes that vehicle safety and fuel efficiency has evolved since these limits were previously set.”

Additionally, Doug Ford’s government included plans to widen Hwy. 401 in its budget that was unveiled on Thursday.

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