Do heavy vehicles require speed limiters in Quebec?
Unlike some other countries, Quebec imposes speed limits on its entire road network. However, these speed limits do not control the maximum speed at which a motorist chooses to drive. To compensate for this shortcoming, truck carriers equip their fleets with speed limiters. However, are these heavy truck speed limiters mandatory in Quebec or is the decision up to the carriers?
Speed limiters for heavy vehicles in Quebec: an overview
Speed limiters are a relatively new concept in our province. In fact, they were only imposed on 1 January 2009. According to this legal amendment, a speed limiter must be set and activated to prevent vehicles from exceeding 105 km/h. It is worth noting that this measure imposed on road transport companies does not apply to all vehicles. It essentially applies to trucks and transport vehicles assembled after December 31, 1994, with a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,000 pounds or more. Buses, emergency vehicles, recreational vehicles and tool vehicles are exempt from this measure.
Why limit vehicle speed to 105 km/h when the maximum speed on our roads is 100 km/h? This is a perfectly reasonable question. This limit was established for consistency with other North American jurisdictions, some of which allow slightly higher speed limits than those permitted here. Also, this small 5 km/h gap was introduced to make it easier to pass slow moving vehicles.
The advantages of this device
Some studies have shown the benefits of using speed limiters. In Quebec alone, the activation of these devices results in annual fuel savings of 46 million litres, thereby reducing greenhouse gas emissions by some 130 kilotonnes per year.
Moreover, another study reports that enforcing a speed limiter set at 105 km/h increases road safety in free-flowing traffic, particularly in straight segments, which is much less safe when the maximum limit is set at 110 km/h. This is very important, especially if the vehicle is carrying dangerous materials. Along with their direct impact, and since they improve energy efficiency and reduce maintenance costs, limiters allow companies to reduce their operating costs, despite an increase in driving time.
Speed limiters for heavy vehicles in Quebec and you
Speed limiters imposed on heavy vehicles in Quebec can be installed by the manufacturer, dealer, workshop technician or truck owner, if the truck has the required equipment. The operation takes only a few minutes and is easily carried out using a tool that is plugged into a dedicated port. Offenders who choose not to comply with this obligation may be fined between $350 and $1050. So be warned.
To learn more about this subject or to hire the services of a proven freight transportation company, contact Transport Econo Nord.