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HOV lanes access in Québec is imminent for EV drivers

Quick note to Québec drivers : Late last week, there was construction work on the Laurentian autoroute (HWY 15). They were replacing the HOV lanes signs with new ones in which the HOV logo (the car with the number of minimum passenger written inside it) is offset to the right instead of being centered.

To it's left, an orange square is blocking the EV logo we have on our plates. (barely visible in my picture but very clear when seen during the day).

Quick one :
pancarte.png


logo.png


About time if you ask me!
This is going to save me 15-20min each night when I come home.
 
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mknox

Well-Known Member
Aug 7, 2012
10,103
1,870
Toronto, ON
I wonder if Ontario Green Plates would be allowed, and, conversely, whether Quebec EVs would be allowed in Ontario HOV lanes? Right now it seems like it is limited provincially.
 
I wonder if Ontario Green Plates would be allowed, and, conversely, whether Quebec EVs would be allowed in Ontario HOV lanes? Right now it seems like it is limited provincially.

Good question. Right now, when they check it, they are stopped on the left shoulder and they look at you from the front to check if you are compliant with HOV. I'm pretty sure they won't look at the plate but simply recognize the car model so you're probably safe with a Tesla... BUT the fact that you have a front plate might be a dead giveaway :D.

In any cases, this specific part of road is only checked 1-2 per month so if you drive a Tesla, you're probably safe. It's not like HOV stickers are required like in California.
 

clea

Member
Mar 16, 2011
836
18
Laval, Quebec
I noticed that last week as well ... but only half of them were changed then. The other half (of the set before i get off) are done now. I wonder what they are waiting for.

To be fair, this is not the first highway in Quebec that gives EVs access to the HOV lanes. They first started giving them access on the Robert-Bourassa highway in Quebec city almost a year ago as part of the government's initial study ...
 

rapoport3a

Member
Apr 30, 2014
372
90
Ontario
Québec has green plates. It's hard to think that all traffic enforcers know which vehicles qualify for the lanes and which don't. In Ontario you must have green plates on your car to qualify. I'll guess that the same is true in QC.
 

mknox

Well-Known Member
Aug 7, 2012
10,103
1,870
Toronto, ON
Québec has green plates. It's hard to think that all traffic enforcers know which vehicles qualify for the lanes and which don't. In Ontario you must have green plates on your car to qualify. I'll guess that the same is true in QC.

Yeah, but Ontario is weird in this regard. Here, you have to have Ontario Green plates and I don't believe other jurisdictions' credentials are allowed. I suppose it makes sense from the point of view that the perk is intended to incent Ontarians to buy EVs, not people from other states/provinces. Hopefully Quebec is a little more enlightened. Of course, as we saw during the Pan Am Games, enforcement is a whole other discussion.
 

clea

Member
Mar 16, 2011
836
18
Laval, Quebec
Québec has green plates. It's hard to think that all traffic enforcers know which vehicles qualify for the lanes and which don't. In Ontario you must have green plates on your car to qualify. I'll guess that the same is true in QC.

the only info i can find on this is from the Government of Quebec's website which only states that the license plate must be green but it doesn't specify that it has to be a Quebec plate.

Maybe when they make the official announcement of the HOV access on the 15 north they will update the page and clarify the rules.
 

RiverBrick

Active Member
Mar 23, 2014
2,527
1,744
Mount Washington Valley
I asked, and the Ontario transport Ministry said I couldn't drive in their HOV lanes without passengers. Shouldn't they encourage visitors to leave their ICE vehicles at home?

On Robert Bourassa, I've not seen any HOV-specific enforcement, but regular SQ patrols pull people over all the time for violating the car-pool lane. I wonder how strict they will be with the green plate requirement.iirc, EVs delivered before mid-2011 received the normal plates and still some low-volume EV dealers are too lazy or ignorant to install anything other than blue plates. Since I'm paranoid, I also wonder if the Tesla-issued frame will be a problem since it hides the EV logo.
 

Scotty

Member
Dec 4, 2014
133
3
Lodi, CA
I find this thread interesting.

I was recently in Ontario, and have California HOV stickers on the rear end of my MS, in compliance with California registration. I'm sure most of this forum's users are aware of the meaning of BEV (Battery Electric Vehicle), ZEV (Zero Emission Vehicles) and PZEV (Partial Zero Emission Vehicles). In California, there are white HOV stickers for approved BEV's, and green HOV stickers for certain approved PZEV models. HOV stickers and their use, as far as California mandates, is to reduce vehicle emissions. This is also evident in that the San Joachim County Air Resource Board will pay county residents up to $3000 if they purchase, operate and keep ZEV for a certain amount of time. However, it must be noted that California Dept of Motor Vehicles state that the applicable vehicle MUST be registered and the stickers issued and applied properly to the car, to be valid. Others have said they have the sticker in their possession, but have not applied them, nor have they been stopped.

When I was recently traveling in Ontario, I contemplated using the HOV lane if I came across them, but was also traveling with my sister. A fellow MS owner was SpC'ing at the Woodstock location, and they stated the green license plate was the ticket for use in Ontario. I thought of asking an OPP officer if there were any reciprocity for like-registered out of province vehicles, but it didn't come up during the trip. (I have just read the Ontario MTO web site, and yup, would be pulled over and cited, unless subjective leniency was shown by the individual law enforcement officer).

If HOV use is to reduce vehicle emissions, I'd like to see some movement to recognize registrations as the deciding criteria for HOV use, regardless of province or state. I think this is still a relatively new thing, and perhaps hasn't come to light yet in the court system(s).

I'm thinking of writing a letter to the MTO, as a tourist, to highlight a possible oversight on HOV use in Ontario.

Scotty
 

mknox

Well-Known Member
Aug 7, 2012
10,103
1,870
Toronto, ON
If HOV use is to reduce vehicle emissions, I'd like to see some movement to recognize registrations as the deciding criteria for HOV use, regardless of province or state. I think this is still a relatively new thing, and perhaps hasn't come to light yet in the court system(s).

I'm thinking of writing a letter to the MTO, as a tourist, to highlight a possible oversight on HOV use in Ontario.

Thanks for your insights, and I thing a letter from an "outsider" to the MTO would be well received. I have had the opportunity to work with our Ministries of Finance, Transportation and Energy on EV matters and can confidently say there is genuine support and interest (The how-to's of implementation are, of course, another matter!).

Ontario's HOV lanes were put in for the primary reason of reducing congestion. Reduce the number of cars on the road and everyone gets where they're going faster. As a kind of after-thought, our HOV lanes were opened up for a limited time to plug-in vehicles as a perk and incentive. This perk was set to expire in the spring but was extended for another year.
 

Scotty

Member
Dec 4, 2014
133
3
Lodi, CA
You need to have Ontario Green Plates to use the HOV lanes. So no, it doesn't apply to out-of-province cars.

Doug_G,
I agree with your statement. That's why I included the below line in my posting.

(I have just read the Ontario MTO web site, and yup, would be pulled over and cited, unless subjective leniency was shown by the individual law enforcement officer).

If you have any info as to the appropriate contact / address / department at the MTO, as far as sending a non-resident letter to them, or if anyone else might have a POC, I would appreciate it. I'll still start searching. I am also going to go to the California DMV and see if they offer Non-California registered BEV's the ok to use the California HOV lanes. I may also need to talk with the California Highway Patrol, who usually do the state-wide HOV enforcement.

BTW, being born and raised in Ontario, I always enjoy going back to visit friends and family, even though I moved to California more than 35 years ago; the benefit of being a dual citizen.



Scotty
 
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RiverBrick

Active Member
Mar 23, 2014
2,527
1,744
Mount Washington Valley
The 2015-2020 plan for electrifying the transport sector is finally being released tomorrow, so the HOV lane access will probably be announced then.

Note that this announcement was pushed back from June and comes 1.5 years after the present government took power. Considering their motto was "on s'occupe de vrais affaires," it would seem that electrification doesn't fall into the category of "true and important" for them, which is mind-boggling for a province that produces its own CO2 and NOx free electricity, but imports 100% of its oil.
 

clea

Member
Mar 16, 2011
836
18
Laval, Quebec
yes!

CBC published a piece on it and they state at the end of it that "The government said it also wants to give electric-car drivers permission to drive in reserved car lanes and permit them to use toll bridges and roads for free, starting Jan. 1, 2016."
That statement seems a bit ambiguous on whether or not the time period stated is just for the toll bridge access or commuter lane access as well. I guess we'll find out tomorrow if the access to the lanes will be available to us sooner than that ...
 

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