May 15, 2017

More than 18,000 citations and warnings issued
during first Distracted Driving Awareness Week

Illinois motorists received at least 18,297 citations and warnings during the first Distracted Driving Awareness Week conducted by the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police. Most of these were for illegal use of cell phones and electronic communication devices while driving.

Statistics are still being gathered, but those preliminary figures indicate widespread ignorance of – or ignoring of – state laws that make it illegal to text while driving or use a handheld mobile phone while driving, according to ILACP President James R. Kruger, who is also police chief in Oak Brook, Illinois.

During the week of April 24, 2017, nearly 300 state, county and local law enforcement agencies joined together with private sector partners to send a clear and unified message to Illinois motorists: Put down your cell phones, focus on safely operating your vehicle and avoid driving distracted.

The Illinois Chiefs have a long tradition of working towards the enhancement of traffic safety. In addition, the Association continually strives to develop partnerships that help to facilitate that goal. “To that end, we are extremely pleased with the results of our inaugural Distracted Driving Awareness Week initiative,” said Kruger.

The ILACP, in partnership with AAA, coordinated a statewide, distracted driving awareness campaign. It asked participating agencies to encourage their officers to focus enforcement and educational efforts on violations of distracted driving laws within their jurisdictions.

That said, there is much work to be done. Illinois is experiencing a significant increase in traffic fatalities to date. Our hope is that Illinois Distracted Driving Awareness Week will serve as an important first step at bringing attention to this troubling issue. We are asking our law enforcement partners to continue to make this are of traffic safety a priority throughout the year. The ILACP is committed to working towards improving traffic safety, reducing injuries and fatalities and to keeping Illinois Safe. Illinois Strong.