The Illinois Tollway reminds motorists safety is especially important over the Labor Day holiday.
Texting or e-mailing while driving is illegal and deadly, said Executive Director Kristi Lafleur. Drivers should keep their eyes on the road and avoid any distractions.
It is illegal to text or e-mail at any time while driving on Illinois roads, and it is also illegal to use hand-held cell phones while driving in construction zones. In Illinois, data indicates that cell phone distractions, including texting, were the primary or secondary cause of 1,119 vehicle crashes in 2010.
“Drivers who need to send an e-mail or text message should pull over to a safe location or visit a Tollway Oasis, where they can access free Wi-Fi, get something to eat and drink, fill their gas tanks and stretch their legs before getting back on the road,” Lafleur said.
State police enforcement focuses on four offenses
Illinois State Police District 15 will be out in force patrolling the Illinois Tollway throughout the holiday weekend.
District 15 Troopers will initiate a Strategic Highway Safety Plan, “Driving Zero Fatalities to a Reality.” The plan focuses on the fatal four offenses, including:
- Speeding – the leading cause of all crashes.
- DUI – nearly two out of every five Americans will be involved in an alcohol-related traffic crash, with more than 40 percent resulting in a fatality.
- Seat belts – seat belts reduce the risk of fatal injury to front seat occupants by 45 percent.
- Distracted driving – driver inattention is a factor in more than 1 million crashes in America annually.
Additionally, troopers will conduct several roadside safety checks and special enforcement details concentrating on distracted drivers, including those who text while driving.