In Ontario, Canada if you are a teenager wanting to get a driver's license, or a novice driver with less than 2 years driving experience, you are considered a new driver. To get full driving privileges one must pass through the two levels of the graduated licensing system. The first level is the G1 and comes with six conditions that must be followed. The second level, the G2, has less conditions and thus more freedom for the driver to get experience behind the wheel of a motor vehicle.
The graduated licensing system (GDL) in Ontario, Canada first stage is referred to as the G1 license. The motorist must stay at this level 1 step for 12 months, unless they have completed a recognized driver education course in which case they can leave this step after 8 months. Once the G1 minimum period is over the driver must pass a road test to move up to the G2 license.
The G2 license must also be held for minimum of 12 months. After this 12 month time period the motorist can attempt to pass the G2 road test. During the time, that one carries a level 2 license they must adhere to certain conditions. The conditions are not as numerous as the conditions given for the G1 period so that the beginner motorist can get more driving experiences under their belt.
With a G2 license, you can drive anytime during the day or night. There are not restricted hours of which you can only operated during as there was under the G1 restrictions. You also may now drive without an accompanying driver on all Ontario roads.
The conditions of a G2 driver include that the driver is still required to:
1. Maintain a zero blood alcohol level while driving.
2. Make certain the number of passengers in the vehicle is limited to the number of working seat belts. New conditions as of September 1, 2005 include:
All teenage G2 drivers must limit the number of passengers under age 20 that they can carry late at night.
During the first 6 months of carrying the G2, the driver may only carry one passenger under 20 years old between 12:00 midnight and 5:00 a.m. After 6 months of holding the G2 license and until you get your full G license, or turn 20, you may carry up to three passengers under 20 years old between the hours of 12:00 midnight and 5:00 a.m.
These new restrictions do not apply if the G2 driver has a fully licensed driver, with four plus years of experience, in the front seat or if the young passengers are members of their immediate family.
It is recommended that the driver complete each level of the graduated licensing system as soon as the minimum time allows and the driver feels safely ready to do so. This allows the driver to feel confident in their driving abilities and move onto the next step in the licensing process. The G1 or G2 license expires 5 years after the date in which the person received their G1 license.
If the person takes too long, going through the licensing process it could make them have to start over. If one does not pass the G1 and G2 road tests and earned the full G license status by the end of five years then the person will need to retake the knowledge test to get the G1 license again and/or retake the G1 road test to obtain a G2.
The time spent in level 1 and level two graduated licensing steps count towards the four years of experience one needs to be an accompanying driver. At the end of the level two, G2, minimum 12 months a driver can try to pass a road test to be come a fully licensed G driver. If this is passed, the person is now fully licensed to drive any car, van or small truck or a combination of vehicle and towed vehicle up to 11,000 kg (provided the towed vehicle is not over 4,600 kg).
The Ministry of Transportation in Ontario has found the graduated licensing system to be a successful program for young drivers. It has been helpful in reducing injury and death among novice drivers. Research shows that new teenage drivers are more likely to be involved in serious accidents or fatal collisions when they have other teenagers as passengers so that is why the restrictions are in place. With the graduated driving privileges and conditions on the drivers, they learn how to drive safely on the different roadways in Ontario, which is good for every driver on the road.