MP calls for car speed limiters after fatal crash

A fatal high-speed crash in Toronto over the weekend that tore a car in two pieces has strengthened a politician's resolve to force a law requiring all new cars to be equipped with speed limiters.

Liberal horrified by speed-racing collision that ripped apart car

Toronto Liberal MP Jim Karygiannis is calling for speed limiters to be fitted to cars in order to prevent them from exceeding 150 km/h, in the wake of a fatal accident on Monday in which a speeding car slammed into a concrete pole, splitting the vehicle in half. (Tony Smyth/CBC)

A fatal high-speed crash in Toronto over the weekend that tore a car in two pieces has strengthened a federal lawmaker's resolve to force a law requiring all new cars to be fitted with speed limiters.

Liberal MP Jim Karygiannis, the member for Scarborough-Agincourt, said the collision Monday at Kennedy Road and Finch Avenue East underscores the need for the electronic devices that restrict a car from exceeding a particular speed.

The deceased victim was identified on Tuesday as Wyongfong Shen, who goes by the name Song. Police said he was in his 20s.

"It was estimated that this individual was doing 180 kilometres an hour, so should the speed limiter have been at 150 … it would have cut him off and he wouldn't have been able to speed," Karygiannis said.

"Again, 150 kilometres an hour is a pretty fast speed in an urban area."

Although the lower speed may not have saved the driver's life on Monday, Karygiannis said "I figured cars shouldn't be going over 150 kilometres an hour. Nobody needs it. Nobody wants it."

'What is a life worth'

In Monday's crash, the driver smashed his Honda Civic into a concrete hydro pole at Kennedy and Finch. The car was travelling so fast that the front of the car ripped apart upon impact, with the driver still trapped inside the front. The rear end of the vehicle was thrown 20 metres away and settled near a gas station.

The driver suffered severe head trauma and later died in hospital. Police suspect he had been street racing with another car, and are seeking the other driver.

Karygiannis said he will introduce a private member's bill requiring speed limiters in the House of Commons. He has repeatedly tried to introduce such a bill. It did not pass first reading in 2006, but the latest incident has inspired him to try again.

"We've seen carnage, and what is a life worth?" he said.

The bill, if passed, would have amended the Motor Vehicle Safety Act, making it mandatory that all new automobiles on the roads would be equipped with the speed limiters.