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Illinois House Votes To Ban Cell Phones Behind the Wheel

By Chris Bentley in News on Mar 9, 2012 6:40PM

Young woman screams while driving image via Shutterstock.
We hope you’re not in your car reading this on your phone, as the Illinois House voted Thursday to ban the use of hand-held mobile devices behind the wheel.

Chicagoans caught texting or talking while driving already pay a hefty fine. There are already cell phone bans of some sort in more than 75 municipalities across Illinois. A statewide penalty — $75 for a first offense — would make Illinois the 10th state to ban cell phone use while driving.

Pending approval in the state senate and Gov. Pat Quinn’s signature, HB3972, sponsored by State Rep. John D'Amico (D-Chicago) becomes law. The house measure passed 62-53, with opponents arguing the ban would be unenforceable.

When two 2010 laws went into effect banning cell phone use while driving through construction and school zones, state police pulled over thousands of distracted motorists.

Cell phone cyclists beware. Those looking for a rush can still chow down behind the wheel in Oak Park, for now.