By Bob Nault MP
KENORA – With the first snowfall of the season, comes a renewed focus on transportation. In today’s world, technology associated with improving the way we travel is evolving at a very high rate. It’s our government’s job to keep up with the changes.
For example, recently Minister of Transport, Marc Garneau, put forward new regulations that will require rear-visibility systems on all new vehicles sold in Canada to help drivers see behind their vehicle when they back up. From 2004 to 2009, it is estimated that back-over crashes were responsible for more than 1,500 injuries and 27 deaths in Canada.
Rear-view cameras and displays are found on a number of vehicles today but not all. The proposed regulations will rectify this by providing all new car owners with improved visibility to spot people and objects behind a vehicle when backing up.
While changes like this are meant to lead to safer travel, the way we get around is changing drastically. As we become more environmentally aware, electric vehicles will become more of a norm which means we’ll need charging stations across Canada including in Northwestern Ontario.
We also are seeing that driverless cars, which once seemed very far in the future is fast becoming a reality because of huge advances in technology. On January 1st, 2016, the Ontario government launched a 10-year pilot project allowing driverless vehicles to be tested on the province’s roads.
All across country, whether it’s rural or urban, the way we get from Point A to Point B is changing. Bicycles are becoming more prevalent as well as pedestrians. Transportation, true to its name, is constantly moving. I am looking forward to seeing how technology plays an integral role in keeping Canadians safer when they travel now and in the future.
Bob Nault MP