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You can get slapped with a $121 fine for not having winter tires on most B.C. highways

Be prepared.
Snow tires are defined as those with either the M+S (mud and snow) or mountain/snowflake symbol.

While it might not look like a winter wonderland in your neck of the woods, most routes in British Columbia now require snow tires. 

Each year, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure reinstates its winter tire requirement on most routes in B.C. starting Oct. 1. 

Most B.C. highways have mountain passes where drivers are likely to encounter wintry weather conditions, such as snow and ice. These routes are marked with regulatory signage and drivers are responsible for ensuring that their vehicles are properly equipped for the terrain. If they fail to do so, they may be subject to a fine.

The winter tire rules remain in effect on most B.C. highways until April 30, 2023. On some highways that aren't located through mountain passes and/or high snowfall areas, tire and chain requirements end March 31, 2023.

In B.C., appropriate snow tires are defined as those with either the M+S (mud and snow) or mountain/snowflake symbol. They must also be in good condition with a minimum tread depth of 3.5 millimetres.

Passenger vehicles not equipped with winter tires are subject to a $121 fine, while commercial vehicles not carrying chains can get slapped with a fine of $196. In addition, commercial vehicles bypassing an active chain-up area are subject to a fine of $598.

Drivers can check out the designated winter tire and chain routes online with Drive BC.

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