NORTH BAY, Ontario — The province of Ontario is changing a regulation governing the use to studded tires to permit the use of tires with more and lighter studs in northern Ontario.
The changes will incorporate a "pavement wear performance requirement," according to the Ministry of Transportation, which is used in Scandinavian countries to permit the use of new types of studded tires.
The ministry said It expect that studded tires meeting the new requirement will be comparable or less damaging to pavements than a tire that meets the stud specifications outlined in the current/existing regulation.
The regulation also will include language that that defines the maximum number of studs based on rim size; and make technical clarifications to represent current industry stud embedment processes during tire manufacture.
The use of studded tires in Ontario is permitted between Sept. 1 and May 31 for vehicles registered in northern Ontario, which includes Algoma, Cochrane, Kenora, Manitoulin, Nipissing, Parry Sound, Rainy River, Sudbury, Thunder Bay, and Temiskaming Territorial Districts, the ministry said.
South of these areas, the use of studded tires is prohibited due to the more extensive damage they would cause to paved roads. For vehicles from outside of Ontario, studded tires can be used while travelling in the province for up to a month.
Kinga Surma, Parliamentary assistant to the minister of transportation, and Nipissing Member of Parliament Vic Fedeli announced the change recently at a Kal Tire outlet in North Bay.
"Our government is continuing to make it easier to do business in Ontario," Ms. Surma said. "This is a perfect example of an outdated regulation that created unnecessary barriers for manufacturers and drivers. This change will let businesses bring new and improved studded tires to market and give people in Northern Ontario more options for driving in tough winter conditions."
Mr. Fedeli added: "This is great news for drivers and businesses across Northern Ontario. We're opening the door for the latest models of tires to be sold, while continuing to protect the roads in our communities."
The Tire and Rubber Association of Canada voiced its support for the change, saying the change will improve winter driving for Norther Ontarians and protect road surfaces.
Changes were made to Ontario Regulation 625 and came into effect on Jan. 25
Prior to the recent changes, studded tires were regulated based on technical specifications such as the length of the stud and the maximum number of studs per tire, based on the gross weight of the vehicle and the tire size.