Speed limits in Canada
Default speed limits
Default speed limits apply on roads which do not have speed limit signs. Actual speed limits may differ by individual road segment, as indicated by speed limit signs.
In most provinces, default speed limits are 50 km/h in urban areas, 80 km/h in rural areas, and 100 km/h on grade-separated expressways.  Default speed limits for school zones tend to be 30 or 40 km/h in urban areas and 50 km/h in rural areas.
|Province or Territory||School Zone
(rural / urban)
(local / highway)
|Expressway||Highest speed limit|
|Alberta||30 / 30||50 ||80 / 100||100||110|
|British Columbia||30 / - ||50 ||80||110||110|
|Manitoba||30 / 50||50||80 / 100||100||110|
|New Brunswick||50 / 50||50||80||110||110|
|Newfoundland and Labrador||50 / 50||50||80 / 100||100||100|
|Nova Scotia||30 / 50||50||80 / 90||110||110|
|Ontario||40 / 40||50||80||100||100|
|Prince Edward Island||- / 60||50||80 / 90||N/A||90|
|Québec||30 / 50||50||90||100||100|
|Yukon||30 / 50||50||80||N/A||80|
In Ontario, speeding fines double in areas identified as "Community Safety Zones" as well as "school zones".
In most Canadian provinces, as in most other locales, speed violation fines are double (or more) in construction zones, although in Ontario and Alberta, this only applies if workers are present in the construction zone.
In Ontario, as of September 2007, drivers caught speeding 50 km/h over the posted speed limit have the vehicle that they are driving impounded immediately for 7 days and their license suspended for 7 days and have to appear before the court. For a first conviction, they face an additional $2,000-$10,000 fine and 6 demerit points; they may also face up to 6 months in jail and licence suspension of up to two years. For a second conviction within 10 years of the first conviction, their license may be suspended for up to 10 years.
Truck Speed Limiters
In Ontario and Québec, trucks must be electronically limited to 105 km/h.
Radar detectors in Canada are legal only in British Columbia, Alberta, and Saskatchewan. They are illegal to use in Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut. Regardless of whether they are used or not, police and law enforcement officers there may confiscate radar detectors, operational or not, and impose substantial fines in provinces where radar detectors are illegal. Quebec penalizes $500 CAD for use of a radar detector, along with confiscation of the device.
A speed limit sign reads "MAXIMUM XX", such as "MAXIMUM 80" for 80 km/h. A minimum speed sign reads "XX MINIMUM", such as "60 MINIMUM" for 60 km/h.
Realism of speed limits
In British Columbia, a review of speed limits conducted in 2002 and 2003 for the Ministry of Transportation found that posted limits on investigated roads were unrealistically low for 1309 km and unrealistically high for 208 km. The reports recommended to increase speed limits for multi-lane limited-access highways constructed to high design standards from 110 km/h to 120 km/h. As described in that report, the Ministry is currently using "...Technical Circular T-10/00 [...] to assess speed limits. The practice considers the 85th percentile speed, road geometry, roadside development, and crash history."
Speed limits in Ontario were lowered from 113 km/h to 100 km/h during the 1970s energy crisis. In spite of safety and fuel economy advances, four decades later the speed limits have never been raised back to the 1960s levels or beyond. The Ministry of Transportation of Ontario data shows that excessive speed is the primary factor in only 6.7% of fatal traffic accidents in Ontario. There is a growing movement to increase speed limits from 100 km/h to 130 km/h or 140 km/h in order to catch up with the rest of the developed world.
- "DRIVING THE SPEED LIMIT". Ontario Ministry of Transportation. Retrieved 15 February 2012.
- "United States Department of State: Consular Information Sheet for Canada". Travel.state.gov. Retrieved 2010-10-17.
- MoT Speed Review Report