10

 


Second Session, 46th General Assembly

58 Elizabeth II, 2009

BILL 10

AN ACT TO AMEND THE HIGHWAY
TRAFFIC ACT

Received and Read the First Time...................................................................

Second Reading..............................................................................................

Committee......................................................................................................

Third Reading.................................................................................................

Royal Assent...................................................................................................

HONOURABLE KEVIN O'BRIEN

Minister of Government Services

Ordered to be printed by the Honourable House of Assembly

 

EXPLANATORY NOTES

This Bill would amend the Highway Traffic Act to update various provisions to reflect current practice, to consolidate requirements and eliminate redundancies.

Clause 1 of the Bill would repeal and substitute paragraph 2(q) of the Act to make it consistent with current drafting practice. This clause would further repeal the definitions of "transporter" and "transporter plate" as these terms are no longer used and are not required.

Clause 2 of the Bill would revise section 10 of the Act to ensure consistency in the use of the term "marker".

In clause 3 of the Bill, subsection 11(2) of the Act would be amended to delete the requirement that registrations be signed in pen and ink. Other registration methods which do not require signature in that manner are currently used. Further, this clause would repeal subsections 11(5) and (9) of the Act authorizing the registrar to prescribe forms. That authority exists in section 5 of the Act.

Clause 4 of the Bill would repeal and substitute section 12 of the Act to streamline registration requirements. The proposed change is consistent with changes made to the definition of "resident" in an earlier amendment to the Act.

Subclause 5(1) of the Bill would amend subsection 16(1) of the Act to require compliance with section 16.1 for the purpose of registration. Further, the proposed paragraph 16(2)(b) in subclause 5(2) would revise the language of that provision to permit the registrar to issue one or 2 plates for a vehicle as determined appropriate.

Subsection 20(2) of the Act would be repealed in clause 6 of the Bill. This subsection, which requires dealers to accompany prospective buyers when test driving unregistered vehicles, is impractical and unnecessary as the prospective buyer is already required to have a driver's licence.

In clause 7 of the Bill, subsection 23(1) of the Act would be amended and subsection 23(2) of the Act would be repealed. These provisions, which require a dealer to keep a written record of a vehicle upon which a dealer's plate is used, place an unnecessary administrative burden on the dealer.

Clause 8 of the Bill would repeal subsections 28(2) and (3) of the Act. Those provisions are now outdated and a lost identification plate or vehicle licence would more appropriately be returned to the registrar or the nearest traffic officer.

Section 30 of the Act would be repealed and substituted in clause 9 of the Bill to reduce the level of prescriptive detail respecting the attachment of plates and to make requirements more generally applicable.

In clause 10 of the Bill, section 34 of the Act would be repealed and substituted to ensure consistency in the use of the term "marker" throughout the Act.

Clause 11 of the Bill would repeal subsection 41(4) of the Act. This subsection does not reflect current practice.

Subsection 45(3) of the Act would be repealed in clause 12 of the Bill as it is redundant. Authority to prescribe forms is contained in section 5 of the Act.

Clause 13 of the Bill would repeal paragraphs 46(3)(a) and (c) of the Act as these provisions are contained elsewhere in the Act.

Clause 14 of the Bill would repeal paragraph 48(1)(g) of the Act. The registrar has methods to determine physical and mental competency to drive in other provisions of the Act.

In clause 15 of the Bill, subsections 49(1) and (1.1) of the Act would be updated to reflect current practice.

Clause 16 of the Bill would amend subsections 50(2) and (3) of the Act as these provisions are now outdated. The more appropriate route for return of a lost driver's licence is through the registrar or nearest traffic officer.

Clause 17 of the Bill would repeal and substitute subsection 56(3) of the Act. That subsection, which requires inspection of a driver's licence of a person renting a car, would be updated to reflect current practice.

The amendments proposed in clauses 18 and 19 of the Bill would repeal references to the Registrar's Advisory Committee in the Act. The committee was established in 2002 but never met, and it is now redundant as there are other processes in place to fulfill the functions with which it was charged.

Clause 20 of the Bill would amend subsection 79(2) of the Act. These cards are no longer required by the industry to be signed.

Clause 21 of the Bill would update section 81 of the Act by deleting the reference to the now repealed Judgment Recovery (Nfld) Ltd. Act.

In clause 22 of the Bill, section 96 of the Act would be amended to repeal the requirement for audible signals when passing. This requirement is antiquated.

Clause 23 of the Bill would repeal section 138 of the Act. That section is antiquated and is redundant. The protections for animals are contained in section 139 of the Act.

Section 173.1 would be added to the Act in clause 24 of the Bill. This section would allow the registrar to release certain information respecting accidents to the parties involved or their representatives in which the amount of damage is less than that which is required to be reported to the police.

Clauses 25 and 26 of the Bill would consolidate sections 174.1 and 174.2 of the Act to address redundancy in those sections.

Subclause 27(1) of the Bill would repeal paragraph 178(5)(a) of the Act to eliminate an exemption on the use of seat belts while driving in reverse. The benefit of seat belt use in slow speed collisions does not support this exemption.

The amendment proposed in subclause 27(2) of the Bill would update references in paragraph 178(5)(b) of the Act.

In subclauses 27(3) and (4) of the Bill, paragraphs 178(5)(c) and (7)(b) of the Act would be repealed and substituted. This would remove a more general seat belt exemption and replace it with an exemption only for persons actively engaged in the collection of garbage or other waste materials.

Clause 28 of the Bill would amend paragraph 178.1(4)(a) of the Act to update a reference.

Clause 29 of the Bill would revise paragraph 186(f.1) of the Act to ensure consistency in the use of the term "marker".

Clause 30 of the Bill would repeal and substitute paragraph 195(1)(n) of the Act to clarify that provision and revise it consequential to changes proposed in clause 10.

The Schedule to the Act would be amended in Clause 31 of the Bill to reflect the proposed repeal of section 138.

Clause 32 of the Act is a proclamation clause.

A BILL

AN ACT TO AMEND THE HIGHWAY
TRAFFIC ACT

Analysis


1. S.2 Amdt.
Definitions

2. S.10 Amdt.
Registration of vehicle required

3. S.11 Amdt.
Application for registration

4. S.12 R&S
Registration and exemptions

5. S.16 Amdt.
Registrar to register vehicle

6. S.20 Rep.
Conditions of use of vehicle

7. S.23 Amdt.
Dealer's plate transferable

8. S.28 Amdt.
Licence, etc. property of Crown

9. S.30 R&S
Attachment of plates

10. S.34 R&S
Identification markers

11. S.41 Amdt.
Suspension of registration

12. S.45 Amdt.
Application for licence

13. S.46 Amdt.
Registrar shall issue licence

14. S.48 Amdt.
Registrar shall not issue licence

15. S.49 Amdt.
Licence to be signed

16. S.50 Amdt.
Licence property of Crown

17. S.56 Amdt.
Rental prohibited

18. S.65 Amdt.
Suspension or cancellation

19. S.65.1 Rep.
Registrar's Advisory Committee

20. S.79 Amdt.
Garage, etc. policy

21. S.81 Amdt.
Registrar shall suspend licence

22. S.96 Amdt.
Overtaking another vehicle

23. S.138 Rep.
When engine and person astride a horse meet

24. S.173.1 Added
Information release- non-reportable accidents

25. S.174.1 R&S
Report required

26. S.174.2 Rep.
Report of optometrist

27. S.178 Amdt.
Seat belts

28. S.178.1 Amdt.
Child seat restraint systems

29. S.186 Amdt.
Regulations

30. S.195 Amdt.
Regulations respecting equipment

31. Sch. Amdt.

32. Commencement


Be it enacted by the Lieutenant-Governor and House of Assembly in Legislative Session convened, as follows:

RSNL1990 cH-3 as amended

1. (1) Paragraph 2(q) of the Highway Traffic Act is repealed and the following substituted:

(q) "department" means the department presided over by the minister;

(2) Paragraphs 2(aaaa) and (bbbb) of the Act are repealed.

 

2. Paragraph 10(1)(d) of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:

(d) there is affixed to the motor vehicle and a trailer drawn by the motor vehicle, in the manner prescribed in this Act or the regulations, valid identification plates or markers issued under this Act or the regulations in respect of the motor vehicle and trailer.

 

3. (1) Subsection 11(2) of the Act is amended by deleting the phrase "and shall sign the application with pen and ink".

(2) Subsections 11(5) and (9) of the Act are repealed.

 

4. Section 12 of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:

Registration and exemptions

12. (1) An owner or operator of a passenger vehicle, other than a commercial motor vehicle, who is a resident of the province shall register it as required under section 11.

(2) A non-resident who owns or operates a passenger vehicle, other than a commercial motor vehicle, that is registered in a jurisdiction outside the province in which the non-resident lives and which the person operates for private use, may operate that vehicle in the province without registering it under this Act.

(3) Notwithstanding subsection (1), a person who enters the province to take up residence may operate a vehicle in the province for a period of not longer than 90 days before registering the vehicle as required by this Act.

 

5. (1) Subsection 16(1) of the Act is amended by deleting the word "and" at the end of paragraph (b), by deleting the comma at the end of paragraph (c) and substituting a semi-colon and the word "and", and by adding immediately after that paragraph the following:

(d) the person is not, due to non-payment of fines, subject to an action listed under section 16.1,

(2) Paragraph 16(2)(b) of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:

(b) one or more identification plates as determined by the registrar, and the identification plates shall be distinctive and numbered as the registrar may determine.

 

6. Subsection 20(2) of the Act is repealed.

 

7. (1) Subsection 23(1) of the Act is amended by deleting the phrase "and the dealer shall keep a written record of a vehicle upon which a dealer's plate is used".

(2) Subsection 23(2) of the Act is repealed.

 

8. Subsections 28(2) and (3) of the Act are repealed and the following substituted:

(2) Where a person finds an identification plate or vehicle licence that was not issued in respect of a vehicle that person owns and the period for which the identification plate or vehicle licence was issued has not expired, the finder shall return the plate or licence to the registrar or nearest traffic officer.

(3) A traffic officer who receives an identification plate or vehicle licence under subsection (2) shall return the identification plate or vehicle licence to the registrar.

 

9. Section 30 of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:

Attachment of plates

30. (1) A driver, owner, or a person having care or control of a vehicle shall ensure that identification plates are securely fastened at all times to the vehicle for which they are issued so as to prevent the plates from swinging and are at a height of not less than 30 centimetres from the ground measured from the bottom of each plate and in a place and position so that the plate is clearly visible.

(2) In addition to the requirements of subsection (1), a driver, owner or a person having care or control of a vehicle shall ensure that

(a) where one plate is issued, that the plate is clearly visible from the rear of the vehicle; and

(b) where 2 plates are issued, one plate is clearly visible from the front of the vehicle and the other plate is clearly visible from the rear of the vehicle.

 

10. Section 34 of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:

Identification markers

34. The registrar may issue other plates or markers that may be prescribed in regulations made under section 195, in addition to the identification plates referred to in section 16, which shall be displayed on the vehicle in the manner that may be prescribed in the regulations.

 

11. Subsection 41(4) of the Act is repealed.

 

12. Subsection 45(3) of the Act is repealed.

 

13. Paragraphs 46(3)(a) and (c) of the Act are repealed.

 

14. Paragraph 48(1)(g) of the Act is repealed.

 

15. Subsections 49(1) and (1.1) of the Act are repealed and the following substituted:

Licence to be signed

49. (1) A licence issued by the registrar is not valid until it is signed, and that signature may be reproduced by photographic or electronic means.

 

16. Subsections 50(2) and (3) of the Act are repealed and the following substituted:

(2) A finder of a valid driver's licence shall return the licence to the registrar or nearest traffic officer.

(3) A traffic officer who receives a valid driver's licence under subsection (2) shall return it to the registrar.

 

17. Subsection 56(3) of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:

(3) A person shall not rent a motor vehicle to another person unless he or she has inspected that other person's driver's licence.

 

18. Section 65(1.2) of the Act is amended by deleting the phrase and comma "upon considering the recommendation of the Registrar's Advisory Committee," and by deleting the comma immediately before that phrase.

 

19. Section 65.1 of the Act is repealed.

 

20. Subsection 79(2) of the Act is amended by deleting the phrase "in handwriting and in ink with the person's usual signature".

 

21. Subsection 81(1) of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:

Registrar shall suspend licence

81. (1) Where

(a) a judgment for damages arising out of a motor vehicle accident is rendered against a person by a court in the province or by a court in a jurisdiction outside the province;

(b) damages have been assessed against the person; and

(c) that person fails, within 15 days from the date upon which the judgment became final, to satisfy the judgment

the registrar, upon receiving a certificate of that final judgment from the court in which it is rendered, shall suspend the driver's licence and vehicle licence of that person.

 

22. (1) Paragraph 96(1)(a) of the Act is repealed.

(2) Paragraph 96(2)(a) of the Act is repealed.

 

23. Section 138 of the Act is repealed.

 

24. The Act is amended by adding immediately after section 173 the following:

Information release- non-reportable accidents

173.1 (1) The registrar may release the information referred to in subsection (2) to

(a) a person involved in an accident which was not required to be reported under this Act;

(b) a person or insurance company that has paid or may be liable to pay damages resulting from an accident; or

(c) a solicitor, agent or other representative of the person or company

where the registrar has received written confirmation of the accident by either of the parties involved in the manner acceptable to the minister.

(2) The registrar may, under the authority of subsection (1), release the following information:

(a) the identification of vehicles involved in the accident;

(b) the name and address of the registered owner; and

(c) the name and address of an insurance company that has issued a policy insuring a party to or a person involved in an accident, together with the policy number applicable to that policy.

 

25. Section 174.1 of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:

Report required

174.1 (1) A medical practitioner licensed under the Medical Act, 2005, a nurse practitioner as defined in the Registered Nurses Act, 2008 or an optometrist licensed under the Optometry Act, 2004 shall report to the registrar the name, address, date of birth and clinical condition of a person 16 years of age or older attending the practitioner or the optometrist for medical or optometric services who, in the opinion of the practitioner or optometrist, is suffering from a condition that may make it dangerous for the person to operate a motor vehicle.

(2) An action shall not be brought against a medical practitioner, a nurse practitioner or an optometrist for complying with subsection (1).

(3) A report referred to in subsection (1) is privileged for the information of the registrar only and shall not be open for public inspection.

(4) A report referred to in subsection (1) is not admissible in evidence for a purpose in a trial except to prove compliance with subsection (1).

 

26. Section 174.2 of the Act is repealed.

 

27. (1) Paragraph 178(5)(a) of the Act is repealed.

(2) Paragraph 178(5)(b) of the Act is amended by

(a) deleting the reference "Medical Act" and substituting the reference "Medical Act, 2005"; and

(b) deleting the reference "Registered Nurses Act" and substituting the reference "Registered Nurses Act, 2008".

(3) Paragraph 178(5)(c) of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:

(c) a person who is actively engaged in the collection of garbage or other waste materials which requires that person to alight from and re-enter a vehicle at frequent intervals and who, while engaged in that work, does not drive or travel in that vehicle at a speed exceeding 20 kilometres an hour;

(4) Paragraph 178(7)(b) of the Act is repealed.

 

28. Paragraph 178.1(4)(a) of the Act is amended by deleting the reference "Registered Nurses Act" and substituting the reference "Registered Nurses Act, 2008"

 

29. (1) Paragraph 186(f.1) of the Act is amended by deleting the word "stickers" and substituting the word "markers".

(2) Paragraph 186(k) of the Act is repealed.

 

30. Paragraph 195(1)(n) of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:

(n) prescribing the manner in which identification plates and markers issued under subsection 34(1) shall be affixed and displayed, and prescribing those plates, markers or both which may be issued by the registrar in addition to those issued under sections 16 and 34, the conditions under which those plates and markers may be issued and the manner in which those plates and markers shall be affixed or displayed;

 

31. The Schedule to the Act is amended by deleting the offence and penalty provisions relating to subsections 138(1) and (2).

Commencement

32. This Act comes into force on a day to be proclaimed by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council.