Ontario Transit Systems seek exemption from no-fault insurance

    TORONTO, Aug. 1 /CNW/ - The Canadian Urban Transit Association (CUTA) and
the Ontario Public Transit Association (OPTA) have submitted proposals to the
Ontario Auto Insurance Five Year Review calling for the exemption of public
transit from the provisions of the Statutory Accident Benefit Schedule (the
"no-fault" regime) and returning public transit in Ontario to a pure tort
regime for bodily injury claims.
    "Ontario's public transit systems are experiencing skyrocketing insurance
costs relating specifically to the no-fault regime", says Kelly Paleczny,
Chair of OPTA. "It is an inappropriate system in a public transit environment.
Effective risk management, deterrence, and control of claims are challenging
and the cost of the program is not sustainable."
    Ontario transit systems and its representative associations are calling
for changes to the no-fault legislation in their public submission to the
Ontario Ministry of Finance. The submission highlights the unique nature of
public transit and rationale for the call for the exemption.
    "Medical fees and assessment costs are no longer capped and are now all
at the insurer's expense," says Paleczny. "Exempting public transit from the
Statutory Accident Benefit Schedule's provisions would be a step in the right
direction. Alberta and Newfoundland's transit systems operate effectively in a
pure tort environment - as does most of the United States of America - and
Ontario should follow these examples."
    "We are urging the province to exempt public transit from the no-fault
regime and return bodily injury claims relating to surface vehicles owned by
public transit systems to a pure tort regime," adds Larry Ducharme, Chair of
the CUTA Ontario Regional Committee.

    OPTA represents the public transit systems of approximately 80 Ontario
municipalities, as well as transportation providers in the non-profit sector
and suppliers to the industry.

    CUTA is the national association representing public transit systems,
suppliers to the industry, government agencies, individuals and related
organizations in Canada.

For further information:

For further information: Maureen Shuell, Director of Communications,
CUTA, shuell@cutaactu.ca, (416) 365-9800, ext 105

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Canadian Urban Transit Association

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