The provincial government is reminding vehicle owners that auto insurance companies are now mandated to offer discounts for using winter tires.
Yvan Baker, Parliamentary assistant to Finance Minister Charles Sousa, recently announced drivers are encouraged to take advantage of the discount. On average, drivers with winter tires can have their auto insurance rates reduced by two to five per cent.
Winter tires enhance safety and lessen the likelihood of collisions by improving braking and handling in snowy, slushy and icy conditions.
“Winter tires don’t just make you more safe, they protect those around you, including passengers, other drivers and pedestrians,” Baker observed. “The winter tire discount doesn’t just lower your auto insurance rate by up to five per cent — it makes everyone on the road safer.”
When considering winter tires, vehicle owners should:
• Look for models that carry a logo of a snowflake on a peaked mountain;
• Install them in sets of four;
• Check their air pressure and condition at least once a month;
• Get new tires if they are worn close to the tread-wear indicators.
The winter tire discount is one of many ways the province is reducing insurance costs for Ontario’s almost 10 million drivers. Other reforms include prohibiting auto insurance premium increases for minor at-fault accidents and lowering the maximum interest rate that can be charged on monthly auto insurance premium payments to 1.3 per cent from three per cent.
“These reforms have lowered rates for Ontario’s almost 10 million drivers,” Sousa commented. “Through our Auto Insurance Cost and Rate Reduction Strategy, we have also brought in new measures to combat auto insurance fraud and help pass on more savings to consumers. Thus far, rates have declined by more than eight per cent on average since August 2013.”