1905ELGIN – Illinois’ roads will be safer thanks to a new law pushed by State Senator Cristina Castro (D-Elgin).

Castro’s House Bill 4846 was signed into law Tuesday, takes effect July 1, 2019 and making the first time a person uses a cell phone while driving a moving offense. Previously, the first offense was classified as a warning.

“This new measure will help save lives,” Castro said. “Sending one quick text while driving is dangerous. We have to work together to get the message across that texting and driving is one of the most dangerous forms of distracted driving.”

In 2013, the General Assembly passed a bill to prohibit all uses of cellular phones while driving. House Bill 4846 strengthens this law to create stricter guidelines.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, at least 25 percent of police-reported incidents involve some form of distracted driving. According to AT&T, nearly 9 in 10 people engage in smartphone activities while driving. Castro wants to end this epidemic to help save lives and stop preventable fatalities.

“There are countless distractions on the road,” Castro said. “It’s important that we do our best to educate and bring attention to this issue. One short text can cost lives.”

The Illinois Secretary of State and State Police supported the measure.

Category: News

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