Illinois bans hand-held phones in cars - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Illinois bans hand-held phones in cars

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SPRINGFIELD (WREX) -

When the new year hits, you will no longer be able to use a hand-held cellphone while driving in the state of Illinois.

House Bill 1247 was signed Friday in the hopes of cutting down on distracted driving. Drivers will now have to use speakerphones or headsets that allow one-digit or audio dialing. Texting while driving is already outlawed.

Eleven other states and Washington, D.C. already have similar bans in place. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, drivers using hand-held devices are four times more likely to get in a crash that involves injuries. Around 3,000 deaths and 387,000 injuries were caused by distracted driving in 2011.

The law goes into effect January 1.

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