The state of Illinois grossed nearly a half-million dollars from distracted driving citations issued by Illinois State Police since January 1, 2014.
As of May 11, Illinois State Police wrote 3,649 citations and issued 4,433 warnings, nearly tripling last year.
In the Quad Cities area, Illinois State Police issued 91 citations and 184 warnings.
“We see people driving and talking on their phone without a hands-free device, texting, watching videos and playing with other gadgets,” said Illinois State Trooper Jason Wilson.
Wilson added that the reason police issued more warnings than citations was because the law is relatively new, but don’t expect that trend to last.
“From the summer moving forward, you will probably see an increase in citations as opposed to a decrease in citations and an increase in warnings,” Wilson assured.
Illinois drivers can talk on their phone while driving, but they must use a hands-free device such as a Bluetooth.
In the digital age, it’s unclear whether the hands-free law will reduce vehicle accidents, or only serve as an inconvenience for the “new age” generation.
In the meantime, Illinois is the first Midwestern state to implement a hands-free-while-driving law.