New in 2014: Hands-Free Illinois
Some new laws and restriction are set to go into effect at midnight. One will lead to thousands of us putting down our cell phones permanently while behind the wheel.
It’s the feature that’s becoming standard in new cars, Bluetooth technology.
“It’s been around for quite some time, but you know with the new law going into effect, I think it’s you know becoming more popular,” said Brandon Luloff, sales consultant at Reynolds Ford.
Reynolds Ford in East Moline say it’s only going to get more popular. Staring January 1, 2014 drivers wont be able to use a hand held cell phone whiling driving, but Bluetooths and any hands-free devices are allowed.
Already Reynolds has seen people interested in their vehicles because of it.
“People are coming in specifically asking for it,” said Luloff
However, even with the hands-free devices anything that required you to press more than one button to answer or hand up, its considered illegal.
According to the U.S Department of Transportation, drivers using hand-held devices are four times more likely to get into an accident. In 2011, distracting driving caused 387,000 injuries and more than 3,000 fatalities across the country.
“I mean you can leave your phone in your pocket or your purse and make a phone call,” said Luloff.
Over at Best Buy, employees have to keep restocking their shelves as last minute shoppers get ready to obey the new law.
“Regardless whether or not I agree with that law, I’m going to obey it,” said customer Jennifer Schnell.
Or they’ll have to deal with the consequences.
“I believe a lot of people will forget and I think a lot of people are going to get caught,” said Schnell.
Fines start at $75 for the first time offense. Across the river in Iowa, texting is banned while talking on your cell phone is not.