The Most Common Traffic Violations

If you’ve gotten a ticket for a moving violation, it can be incredibly frustrating. It is important to strongly consider fighting a moving violation because failing to do so could lead to having to pay a huge fine, points on your license and an increase in your insurance premium. The good news is that you can still have your day in court with a moving violation, and you may be able to avoid the penalties.

Every day people across Canada are stopped by police officers and issued traffic tickets. Often, what comes next is a big hassle. These common traffic tickets for the traffic violation are the reason for the majority of traffic stops and also a common reason why people see increases on their auto insurance.

Here are some of the most common traffic violations:

Most Common Traffic Violation


Understanding specific traffic offenses is vital for inexperienced and experienced road drivers. Committing such infractions can have serious repercussions, including fines, license suspension, or even incarceration. In this blog post, we will delve into some of the most frequently committed traffic offenses and provide valuable insights on how to avoid them.

We will discuss strategies for avoiding common traffic violations like speeding, running red lights, and distracted driving. Additionally, you’ll learn about the potential repercussions of these offenses on your driving record and driver’s license status.

Lastly, we’ll explore options for fighting a traffic ticket in court and share tips on maintaining a clean driving record. By staying informed about these prevalent issues on our roads today, you can contribute to safer streets while protecting yourself from unnecessary penalties.

Table of Contents:

Avoiding Common Traffic Violations

To ensure you drive safely and avoid common traffic violations, it’s essential to be aware of the rules of the road and practice good driving habits. Here are some tips and strategies to help you stay on the right side of the law:

  1. Obey posted speed limits: Speeding is one of Canada’s most frequent traffic violations. Always pay attention to posted speed limit signs, especially when entering a new area or zone where speeds may change.
  2. Avoid distracted driving: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) states that distracted driving is a leading cause of accidents in North America. Put away your phone, ensure the GPS is set correctly, and maintain a firm grip on the wheel while driving.
  3. Signal properly when changing lanes: Failing to signal or signal incorrectly can lead to dangerous situations on the road. Always use your turn signals before making lane changes or turns.
  4. Come to a complete stop at red lights and stop signs: Rolling stops are illegal and unsafe for pedestrians and drivers alike. Make sure you come to a complete stop behind any marked lines before proceeding through an intersection with caution.

In addition to these basic guidelines, several online resources can help educate drivers about safe practices while behind the wheel, such as defensive driving courses offered by reputable organizations like CAA ( These courses cover topics like maintaining proper distance, scanning ahead for potential hazards, and adjusting mirrors correctly for optimal visibility, ultimately contributing to keeping our roads safer overall.

Staying informed of alterations in local laws and regulations can be a great way to help avoid traffic infractions. Many provinces update their driving handbooks regularly, so it’s a good idea to review them periodically. The Ontario Ministry of Transportation offers a web-based version of the Driver’s Handbook, which contains comprehensive info about road regulations and safe driving practices.

Lastly, remember that maintaining a clean driver’s license record keeps you out of trouble and helps save money on auto insurance premiums. Insurance companies often offer discounts for drivers without a history of traffic tickets or accidents within a specified period.

Consequences of Traffic Violations

Realizing the effects of traffic offenses is critical for every driver, as these punishments can be profoundly affecting. The repercussions vary depending on the severity and frequency of the offense. Still, they often include fines, points on your driver’s license, increased insurance premiums, and even license suspension or jail time in some cases.

Fines and Points

The most immediate consequence of a traffic violation is usually a fine. Fines for traffic violations can vary greatly, from a minimal amount for minor transgressions like failing to indicate when changing lanes to hefty sums for more serious offenses such as driving recklessly or going far beyond the speed limit. In addition, drivers may incur demerit points on their licenses for certain violations, leading to penalties like license suspension if too many are accumulated within a specific period. Accumulating too many points within a specific period can lead to additional penalties like license suspension.

Increased Insurance Premiums

A less obvious but equally important consequence of traffic violations is increased auto insurance premiums. Insurers view drivers with multiple infractions on their driving records as higher risks, which means they are likely to charge them more for coverage than those who consistently drive safely. Even one ticket could result in higher rates; however, repeated offenses will almost certainly cause substantial increases that could last several years.


  • In some provinces (like Ontario), you might be eligible for discounts if you take approved defensive driving courses after receiving tickets or accumulating demerit points.
  • You should always shop around and compare quotes from different insurers before renewing your policy since each company uses its formula when calculating risk factors based on your driving record.

License Suspension and Jail Time

Traffic violations can lead to license suspension or even jail time in extreme cases. Accumulating demerit points can lead to license suspensions, so it is important to be aware of common traffic violations and take steps to prevent them. Additionally, severe offenses like impaired driving, street racing, or causing bodily harm while operating a motor vehicle could result in criminal charges and possible imprisonment.

To avoid these consequences and maintain your privilege to drive in Canada, it is crucial to understand the most common traffic violations and take steps to prevent them from occurring on your driving record.

Key Takeaway: 

Understanding the consequences of traffic violations is crucial for every driver. Fines, points on your license, increased insurance premiums, and even license suspension or jail time are all possible repercussions. To avoid these consequences and maintain your privilege to drive in Canada, it’s essential to understand the most common traffic violations and take steps to prevent them from occurring on your driving record.

Fighting a Traffic Ticket

Knowing your options for fighting the ticket is essential if you believe you have been wrongly accused of a traffic violation. In some cases, disputing the charge can lead to reduced fines or even dismissal of the citation. Here are some steps to follow when contesting a traffic ticket:

  1. Gather evidence: Collect relevant information and documentation related to the incident, such as photos of road signs or conditions during the alleged violation.
  2. Request disclosure: You can request all evidence against you from law enforcement agencies under Canadian law. This may include officer notes, radar gun calibration records, and dashcam footage.
  3. Seek legal advice: Consult with an experienced traffic lawyer who can help guide you through this process and provide expert advice on your case.
  4. Plead not guilty: To fight your ticket in court, enter a plea of not guilty during your first appearance before a judge or justice of the peace.
  5. Presentation in court: Present your case clearly and concisely using all available evidence collected earlier. It’s crucial to remain calm and respectful throughout this process while focusing on facts supporting innocence.

Note that each province has specific procedures for contesting tickets; therefore, familiarize yourself with local laws. Remember that fighting a ticket takes time and effort; hence weigh potential benefits against the costs involved (such as legal fees).

Traffic School Option

In certain provinces like Ontario, you may be eligible to attend a traffic school instead of fighting the ticket in court. Completing traffic school can help reduce demerit points on your driver’s license and prevent insurance premium increases.

Impact of Traffic Violations on Your Driving Record

Fighting a traffic ticket successfully can help maintain a clean driving record, which is crucial for various reasons:

  • Insurance premiums: A clean driving record will ensure you don’t face increased auto insurance rates due to violations.
  • License suspension: Accumulating too many demerit points from traffic violations can lead to suspension.
  • Jail time: Serious offenses like reckless or distracted driving could result in jail time if not contested effectively.

In conclusion, knowing how to fight a traffic ticket is essential when facing common traffic violations. Be proactive about gathering evidence, seeking legal advice, and understanding local laws while considering alternative options such as attending traffic school.

Key Takeaway: 

The article discusses the steps to fight a traffic ticket, including gathering evidence and seeking legal advice. It also highlights the option of attending a traffic school as an alternative in some provinces like Ontario. Maintaining a clean driving record is crucial for avoiding increased insurance premiums, license suspension, or even jail time for serious offenses.

Keeping Your Driving Record Clean

Maintaining an untarnished driving record is necessary to maintain good standing as a driver and avoid potential repercussions such as higher insurance rates, license suspension, or even jail time. Staying focused on the task and following traffic regulations can help ensure a safe and enjoyable driving experience.

Avoiding Distracted Driving

Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of accidents on Canadian roads. Keep your focus on the road and both hands on the wheel while driving to ensure safe travel. Refrain from using electronic devices like cell phones or GPS systems unless in hands-free mode.

Maintaining Safe Speeds

Speeding is another major contributor to traffic accidents across Canada. Adhering to speed limits helps you avoid tickets and greatly reduces the risk of accidents.

Tips for Staying Within Speed Limits:
  • Familiarize yourself with local speed limits before hitting the road.
  • Use cruise control if available to maintain consistent speeds on highways.
  • Avoid aggressive acceleration when merging onto highways or changing lanes.
  • If unsure about current speed limit signs due to weather conditions (e.g., snow), err on caution by reducing speed until visibility improves.
  • Routinely check your vehicle’s tire pressure; underinflated tires can decrease fuel efficiency and longer stopping distances at high speeds.

Obedience to Traffic Signals & Signs

Always obey traffic signals and signs, such as stopping at red lights or yielding to pedestrians in crosswalks. Failing to comply with traffic regulations can incur a penalty and could endanger other motorists’ lives.

Practicing Safe Lane Changes

Changing lanes is another common area where drivers commit traffic violations. To avoid this issue, always use your turn signal when changing lanes, check mirrors and blind spots for any obstacles before moving, and maintain a safe distance from other vehicles on the road.

Taking Care of Your Driver’s License

Your driver’s license is an essential document allowing you to operate a vehicle on Canadian roads legally. Ensure it remains valid by renewing it promptly when required and keeping it free from demerit points due to traffic violations.

Incorporating these practices into your daily driving routine will help keep your driving record clean while promoting safer roads for everyone in Canada.

Key Takeaway: 

To maintain a clean driving record, drivers should avoid common traffic violations such as distracted driving and speeding. It is important to obey traffic signals and signs, practice safe lane changes, and take care of your driver’s license. By following these practices, drivers can promote safer roads for everyone in Canada.


The most common traffic violation in Canada is speeding. Drivers often exceed posted speed limits, leading to accidents and increased risk for all road users. For more information on speeding statistics, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The primary cause of traffic violations is human error or negligence. This includes distracted driving, aggressive driving, impaired driving due to alcohol or drugs, and failure to follow traffic rules and regulations. Learn more about safe driving practices at Canada Safety Council.

Depending on their severity, most traffic violations are classified as infractions or misdemeanors. Infractions are less severe offenses that usually result in fines but not jail time (e.g., parking tickets), while misdemeanors involve more severe offenses with potential jail time (e.g., reckless driving). Visit your local government's website for specific classifications.

Besides speeding, running red lights and stop signs are among the top moving violations committed by drivers. These actions pose significant risks to public safety by increasing the chances of collisions at intersections. To learn about intersection safety initiatives, check out Transport Canada.