The Labour Day weekend is one of the busiest weekends of the year on Ontario’s highways and waterways, said the Ontario Provincial Police.
It marks the last weekend of the summer driving season. Many families are taking their last summer vacation before school starts. Others are closing their cottages for the summer, while post- secondary students are heading back to their colleges and universities to begin the new school year.
What this means is there will be many more people using our roads, highways and waterways during the next several days. The OPP will be out in force to ensure that safety is on the top of the list for everyone’s travel plans.
It is also important for all Ontario residents to do their part to ensure that their travel plans go smoothly:
-Give yourself extra time to arrive at your destination.
-Wear your seatbelt and be sure that all passengers in your vehicle are wearing theirs.
-Avoid using hand-held electronic devices when you are behind the wheel — keep your eyes on the road and your mind on driving.
-Exercise patience and show courtesy to other people using the highway.
-Be a sober driver.
While on Ontario’s waterways, boaters are also reminded to keep safety in mind on the Labour Day Weekend:
-Get your Pleasure Craft Operator’s card. This is required for those operating a pleasure craft on Ontario’s waterways.
-Know the load capacity of your vessel. It is important to note that the load also includes the passengers on board — not just the cargo. Ensure that the load in your vessel is evenly distributed to avoid taking on water or capsizing.
-Ensure your pleasure craft is properly equipped and in good working order.
-Ensure there are lifejackets or personal floatation devices (PFD) for everyone and wear them.
-Operate your vessel according to the conditions.
-Show courtesy to other boaters and follow the rules.
-Be a sober boater.
ATV and Off Road Vehicle operators should also do their part this weekend:
-Know your local bylaws pertaining to use of an ATV on municipal streets and roads. Passengers are not permitted on roads and highways.
-Make sure your ATV is in good working order and be prepared for breakdowns.
-Wear a helmet and appropriate clothing for your excursion.
-Ride within your abilities.
-Plan your route and ensure that you tell someone where you will be riding and when you should be back. Bring a cell phone if possible.
-Ride where you are permitted and stay off private property.
-Show courtesy to others using the trail.
-Ride alcohol / drug free.
The Ontario Provincial Police is hoping that all Ontario residents enjoy a safe and fun filled Labour Day Weekend. Keep safety in mind ensure a worry-free holiday weekend.