Ontario woman ticketed for driving with a parrot on her shoulder, police say

STRATFORD, Ont. — A driver in southern Ontario was charged with a fairly unusual traffic violation last week — travelling with a large, unrestrained parrot in her car.

Provincial police were contacted Thursday after a woman was spotted driving with a large parrot on her shoulder.

The woman was stopped near Stratford, Ont., and charged under a section of Ontario's Highway Traffic Act that forbids crowding the driver's seat.

Police say a charge of that kind comes with a minimum fine of $110.

Officers say crowding the driver's seat is not a charge they lay often.

But they say that this is a reminder that driving with any unrestrained animals in a car can be a distraction that may lead to dangerous driving.

"We see these things happen with small dogs, sometimes cats, that are on people's laps as they're driving," said Const. Laura Lee Brown, a spokeswoman for the OPP Perth County division.

"It's not unheard of for us to be called about someone travelling with a pet on their lap... (but) this is one of the first instances of someone reporting a large breed bird flying around in a vehicle."

The Canadian Press

Note to readers: CORRECTS para 1 to say the driver was in southeastern Ontario; REMOVES Perth, Ont. reference in para 2; CORRECTS OPP division in para 7

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