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Illinois Cracks Down on Distracted Driving Violations

Illinois state representatives are increasing restrictions and cracking down on distracted driving violations. Warning citations will no longer be given for first-time offenders. A moving violation along with a fine will be administered beginning on July 1st, 2019. The goal of these stricter regulations is to emphasize the dangers of distracted driving and eliminate these acts altogether. State representatives and police officials want to make Illinois streets as safe as possible.

July 1st marks the inauguration of this new enforcement. Whether it is your first or fifth offense a moving violation and a fine will be administered to the recipient. The fine will increase with each offense starting with $75 followed by $100 (2nd), $125 (3rd), and $150 for all future offenses. Three moving violations in a single year will result in the suspension of your driver’s license. These laws are not restricted to cellphones but will encompass all electronic communication devices. This past year, 15,150 distracted driving citations were administered. The enforcement of these new laws aims to diminish death rates and make road travel as safe as can be.

Distracted driving can be anything from texting to looking at a passenger in the back seat. We encourage to keep the following safety precautions in mind to help reduce situations that can cause you to become distracted while driving.

  1. Use Your Cellphone in Emergency Situations Only.

Even if you are using your cellphone to contact a first responder, it is best to pull off the road to make the call. Social conversations on cellphones or text messages should not be made while driving. This will result in a moving violation and a fine after July 1st.

  1. Limit the Number of Passengers and Activity Inside the Car.

Driving with friends can contribute to dangerous driving conditions. This can be true especially for novice drivers. Many states have laws in place that limit the number of teen passengers with a teen driver.

  1. If You’re Feeling Drowsy, Pull Over.

Being drowsy behind the wheel increases your odds of collision by almost four times. Government research shows that nearly thirty-seven percent of drivers across the United States have fallen asleep while driving at least once within the duration of having their license. If you are feeling tired, it is best to get off the road as soon as possible.

  1. Avoid Multi-Tasking.

People spend a lot of time in their cars. While It may seem like the perfect time to get a few things done, multi-tasking can lead to major distractions. Finishing your breakfast, calling a friend, or checking your email may not seem so bad but dealing with food spills and talking on the phone can avert your attention and lead to major distractions. Doing these things means you are less attentive to the drivers around you. Get everything settled before you begin driving so you can place all of your focus on the road.

While the July 1st restrictions are specific to electronic devise use, we encourage you to enforce all of the above practices in your day to day routines. These tips can not only benefit your personal safety but the safety of those around you.

Unfortunately, we cannot always control the actions of others. If you or a loved one are injured by the negligent actions of another distracted driver call the experienced attorneys at Spiros Law at (217) 328-2828 so an attorney can help you explore your options.