New texting and driving law aims to prevent distracted driving

Local News

PEORIA, Ill. — A new texting and driving law goes into effect on Monday and aims to help drivers focus on the roads.

Texting and driving is considered one of the most deadly forms of distracted driving. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says that while traveling 55 miles per hour, it only takes five seconds for a driver to blindly drive the length of a football field.

“I think it’s very dangerous, you’re not concentrating on the road,” said Beth Winberry.

Under the law, texting and driving will be treated as a moving violation. Previously, a driver’s first offense was considered a non-moving violation.

“Just that split second that you’ve got your eyes off the road can be deadly for you, or your kids if you have them, or anyone else,” said Joshua Pollard.

The fines and penalties for texting and driving are also increasing. Peoria County Sheriff Brian Asbell says those things can add up.

“That’s significant because if you get three moving violations within a twelve month time span, your license will be suspended,” Asbell said.

He hopes the law will incentivize drivers to make roadways safer for all.

“Our families drive on these same roads, we want everyone to get home,” Asbell said.

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