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Old 10-09-2012, 11:25 AM   #1
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Canadian Winter Tire Regulations

As many of you are aware, I work for a major tire manufacturer. Every year at this time, we get lots of inquiries concerning the winter tire regulations in Canada.

Here's a summary:

The Snowflake symbol is required in British-Columbia on mountain roads from October 1st to April 30th.

It is also required in Quebec, but until December 15, 2014, some exceptions are also accepted for winter. The Quebec Government passed Law 55, which includes Article 36.1 making winter tires mandatory in winter. The key elements include:

Mandatory winter tire usage from December 15 – March 15

This applies to all passenger road vehicles, including taxi and rental cars. (For the purpose of the Act, a passenger road vehicle includes up to 9-passengers).

Winter tires must be on all wheel positions.

There is a transition period up to December 15, 2014, whereby the following tires will be accepted as winter tires:

1. Tires which carry the Three-Peaked Mountain Snowflake Symbol, or

2. Tires bearing one of the following key words on the sidewall:
- Arctic/Artic
- Blizzard
- Ice
- Snow (but not simply the snow in M&S)
- Stud
- Studdable
- Studless
- Winter
- LT

3. After Dec 15, 2014, only tires with the Three-Peaked Mountain Snowflake Symbol will be accepted.

At one point in time, there was a proposal that the Mountain/Snowflake sumbol could only appear on winter tires - but that proposal was NOT passed. That means that ANY tire, including All Season and All Terrain tires, that can pass the test can display the symbol.

There was also a clarification about the use of a letter from the tire manufacturer stating that IF the tire were tested it would pass the test - AND this is NOT ALLOWED. If the tire does NOT have the symbol, then it is not allowed. (with the exceptions listed above)

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