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Police Remind Drivers to Put Down the Phone

It's now illegal to talk on the phone behind the wheel if it's not hands-free.
PEORIA - Now that 2014 is here a lot of drivers will have a major adjustment to make with their cell phone habits.

A new law makes it illegal to hold your cell phone behind the wheel. State Trooper Dustin Pierce said people have to start using Bluetooth or speakerphone. Either way, only one ear can be covered and it has to be hands-free.
Pierce said they'll be on the lookout to educate people and start ticketing.

"Each individual situation is going to be up to the trooper whether he issues a citation or a warning, but for a short period of time. Then the trooper could give warnings for this, however if they find somebody that's already been warned for this once that person is certainly going to receive a citation," he said.

The first offense is a $75 fine and they go up after that. If someone is hurt by a distracted driver the fines get even bigger and the driver could face jail time.

Find more on this and other new laws here.
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