On January 1, 2014 Illinois banned the use of electronic devices, including hand held cell phones, while behind the wheel of a vehicle. This new law is an expansion to 625 ILCS 5/12 610.2, Illinois’ previously enacted anti-texting and driving statute.
While the new law completely outlaws the use of electronic devices while a driver is driving a vehicle, there are a few exceptions that have been carved out by the legislature that allow for the use of some electronic devices. The statute provides for drivers to use Global Positioning Systems (GPS), CB and HAM radios, or a device that is “physically or electronically integrated into the vehicle.” In addition, the statute allows drivers to use an electronic device in hands free or voice-operated mode, and provides for the use of a head set. The fine for violation of the statute for a first offense is $75, $100 for a second offense, $125 for a third offense, and $150 for a fourth or subsequent offense.
In addition, the new statute is a primary law, which means that an officer can pull you over if he sees you using your electronic device while driving. A secondary law is one where an officer must pull you over for something else and notice the secondary offense in order to issue a citation.