New penalties announced by the Ontario Government intends to treat drug-impaired drivers in the same manner as drunk drivers.
At present, drivers impaired by drugs can face criminal charges but not automatic licence suspensions like drivers busted for being under the influence of alcohol.
Starting Sunday, drivers under the influence could face a $180 fine, a three day licence suspension for the first occurrence, seven days for the second, and 30 days for subsequent roadside test fails.
Additional penalties include a 90-day licence suspension as well as a one week vehicle impound after a positive result by a drug recognition expert at a police station.
Mandatory education, treatment programs or an ignition interlock could also be implemented depending on the number of reoccurring suspensions.
Drivers can already face impaired-related criminal charges which could result in jail time, loss of a driver’s licence and additional fines.
Criminal convictions for impaired driving come with sentences of up to five years.