Rauner Signs Law Increasing Fines, Penalities For Texting And Driving

Aug 31, 2018

Gov. Bruce Rauner signed legislation that will increase fines and penalties for drivers caught using cellphones.
Credit Jaclyn Driscoll / NPR Illinois

Texting and driving could cost you, quite literally, with a new law raising fines on motorists caught using cellphones.

Currently using a phone while driving is considered an equipment violation; it’s the same as driving with a cracked windshield. But, with this new law, it is increased to a moving violation which carries weightier fines and penalties.

Lt. Matt Boerwinkle with the Illinois State Police said texting and driving is happening more often.

“It’s causing single vehicle crashes with no explanation," said Boerwinkle. "A vehicle leaving the roadway, a perfectly good road surface. They’re not tired, they’re just looking at their phone.”

The first violation will result in a fine of $75; that goes up another $25 dollars for each subsequent violation and could result in a suspended license.

The law goes into effect in July 1st, 2019.