New Illinois Driving Laws for 2013

Along with Illinois’s mandatory auto insurance law (IL drivers are REQUIRED to carry at least minimum liability coverage on their automobile – read more here), there are four new laws taking effect in 2013 that Illinois drivers will need to be aware of.

Governor Pat Quinn stated, “By working together, we can deter reckless driving behavior and create safer roads across our state.”  “These new laws will protect children and families, and prevent dangerous trends such as speeding and distracted driving.”  The most publicized law of the four is “Julie’s Law” (effective July 1, 2013), which calls for much stricter penalties imposed on drivers who are cited for driving 25 mph over the speed limit in urban areas, and 30 mph over the speed limit on highways.  The law stems from the 2011 death of Frankfort Square, IL teen Julie Gorczynski, who was struck by a driver going nearly double the posted speed limit (the driver had been cited 7 times previously for excessive speeding).  The other three laws are all concerned with the growing problem of distracted driving.

Senate Bill 2488:  In plain terms, this law expands road work zones to include the areas where signs are posted notifying drivers of an approaching speed zone, thus making it illegal for drivers to use a mobile phone anywhere within a marked roadway work zone.

House Bill 5099:  This law makes it illegal for drivers to use a mobile phone within 500 feet of an emergency scene, such as a traffic accident or responding firefighters or police.

House Bill 5101:  This law, which brings the Illinois Vehicle Code into compliance with federal regulations, makes it illegal for drivers of commercial vehicles to use a hand-held mobile device to talk or text while driving.  This law also makes using a hand-held mobile phone or texting while driving a “serious traffic violation” in the state of Illinois; meaning that drivers are at risk of having their driving privileges suspended or even revoked because of violations of this type.

Everyone knows that distracted driving is a rising problem on the nation’s streets and highways.  Every day scores of drivers are hurt or even killed because of distracted driving.  Active Insurance Agency strongly encourages all of its customers to engage in responsible driving practices.  If you want to know more about Illinois driving laws, we encourage you to have a look through the State of Illinois Rules of the Road.   If you have any questions regarding YOUR auto insurance coverage, do not hesitate to contact your Active Insurance agent today.


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